Tidings of Despair
The day of New Years dawned fair and bright
Cheer was spread well through the night
But on my door, there came a knock
And so all other action stopped
I opened the door, a smile on my face
"Good eve to you! Happy New Years Day!"
The messenger looked at me with drooping eyes
And stating his message, he sighed and sighed
"I come today not to bear
Good wishes filled with love and care.
Nay, I've come to say to you
Things that turn your mood to blue.
I come not with happy heart
Nor do I come in search of a lark.
My good friend, I wish you well
Be prepared for what I'm to tell.
I come with a package of crimson hue,
Something to be returned to you."
Then the man withdrew a blade
And swung it towards me, his eyes full of rage
"While you eat a filling dinner
And have a tree that does not wither,
Others linger on the streets
Begging passerby for treats.
You wish well, but do not at all
To help the poor, the ones who crawl
The ones oblivious to a tender touch
Who with dreary lots are stuck.
Expect me not to understand
How you can call yourself a man!
A man so rich and yet so poor
Who can't spare a coin for beggars at the door.
While you rot in all your luck,
Pain is all that others have struck."
I held up my hands in sheer defense
This man wanted more than a pence
"Children cry out in the streets
Looking for friendly faces to greet,
And yet you folk just pass them by
Ignoring their hopeful, shining eyes.
I'm come to pay you back in full
With this knife, not sharp, but dull."
And then he cast the knife away
Too shocked to move, I heard him say,
"My good sir, I've made my peace.
I've laid the past to rest.
Now help those struggling with grief,
Your character's true test."
With eyes bright with unshed tears,
A face too long without a mirror,
The man went on along the road
Slowly, wearily he strode
And I heard myself call out,
"Stop! Come back!" was my shout
The man turned and met my gaze
Through the snowflakes' flurried haze
"You came bearing tidings of despair
And yet I find I do not care.
You've shown me what I need to know
So good fellow, please don't go."
I swallowed tightly, held open the way
The man grinned, but walked away
"Thank you, sir!" I called to the night
As the stars in the sky shone ever so bright