By the Gate

I saw him hang his head again today,

So as to keep his face from those around.

As usual, he had nothing much to say;

Such words as he might think can ride no sound.

If only he had had a taste of trust,

Perhaps he wouldn’t build up such a wall.

For thoughts as dark as he’s been keeping must

Be kept out of the consciousness of all.

He lives by rules that hint at hidden strength,

So arbitrary, few could second guess

How much he’d fight to keep them; to what length

He’d go to keep his promise, nothing less.

I saw him by the gate again tonight;

One foot in either world, one troubled mind,

Still struggling, still putting up a fight;

Unravelling as fast as he can wind.