Saturday, August 10, 2013

Poem: Après moi le déluge

Après moi le déluge
By Ben Langhinrichs

The crowd is vast and hogs the stage,
A thousand banners wide.
Their hearts and souls, I must engage.
Oh, heaven knows, I’ve tried.
My eager ears embrace the din.
I feel it pounding on my skin.
My eager ears
My eager ears
Assure me that my cause will win.

With single voice, they call my name
As I stride up the stairs.
Their confidence and joy proclaim
My heart at once is theirs.
I know the joy of brotherhood,
My passion’s drive for right and good.
I know the joy
I know the joy
Of working for the common good.

But all at once they’re deathly still.
I stare in shocked surprise.
Then screams cut through, both high and shrill,
Cacophony of cries.
I try to move to safety when
My legs collapse and only then
I try to move
I try to move
But never will I stand again.

The noise grows distant in my ear.
My vision starts to blur.
I catch a glimpse of Death draw near,
“Please come with me, monsieur.”
I struggle back through pain so vile;
He shrugs and says he’ll wait awhile.
I struggle back
I struggle back
To see once more your loving smile.

Past fearful faces streaked with woe,
I look the other way.
A futile search for you, I know,
You stayed at home today.
And yet I sense your presence there,
A loving touch like gentle prayer,
And yet I sense
And yet I sense
The faintest fragrance of your hair.

“Pardon, monsieur, but we must go.”
So, gently, Death persists.
The fragrance fades, my heartbeats slow,
Death takes me by my wrists.
As one, we rise above the crowd,
Their shouts and screams now not so loud.
As one, we rise
As one, we rise
And silence is my final shroud.