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A Tale of Two Cities

Date Written: October 17, 2017

Adorned in white, imposing and stoic

he sat to preside on a case of distaste

the rhetoric being ‘Chief’s word is the gospel’

under the grape vines he keeps

court, counsel and heals the sick

feather quill as a pen he licks

before, in sankrit he writes

to heal the body and soul with

ancient wisdom, chanting a mantra.


A brother of no use, broods

a recluse he became as a seedling

cannot grow in the shade of a mighty oak

life had chocked his zest, suffocating him

as he squandered the family heirlooms

for a can of fish, betrayed by his friend.


The river swelled during their demise

sweeping away the remnants of wealth,

their opulent lifestyle and farm dwellings

Alarmed, to Muizenburg they hastily sojourned

with only clothes on their backs.


Cavalier, dashing and adorned in army greens

he rushes to greet us and sweep me off my feet

Tall and full of joy, with gun at rear, he

drew near, shouting for a feast to be

made in our honor, estranged from his son

since birth due to a gun incident.


Visit we must, before the might Sage expires

was the command my Dad reluctantly received

on his lap I retire, gazing up at ‘Love’

to take a quick nap before the big meal

a story he told off a chance meeting

with the an 'angel' at first he thought

cards and wine they brought to

the graveyard they went, to play undetected

‘Your ask is my command’, bellowed the ‘angel’

Hard choice it was not for him,

he desired wealth beyond imagination,

with the caveat being: a sacrifice to pay the debt


The wealth he received found buried

in a black ornate pot with calligraphic

writings and skulls adorned the lid

he rose up in ranks and soon married

he returned at midnight to their old haunts

to play cards and drink wine but the debt

collection had to be paid in blood

he looked at his childhood friend,

all that he had, try as he might even

inebriate him with more wine, he couldn’t

appease the ‘Devil’ that night.


To home he scurried, his mind being

overrun with murderous intent,

approached by his wife, who

demands an explanation if

whether he is being chased by the Devil

Alarms rung out, as it was change of the guard

he reaches for his gun to protect

only to see her run with children

from fear of being shot.


In the army he had enlisted,

to salvage his disastrous life,

Maritzburg he ruled as Captain

and that is the secret I was wrapped in

as I slept in his mighty arms; protected.

One comment on “A Tale of Two Cities”

  1. River.Ophelia     October 18, 2017

    nicely written, Jessica

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