Thursday, June 21, 2012


I had to wrestle with this one for a while, but I finally got it into a form I feel comfortable showing to people.  Any and all feedback is welcome.

Heat rises up from the screaming earth
as upraised hands reach for seams in the burning day,
desperate prayers from refugees
who choke back their tears to save the water.
The Servant of the Drought fiercely hordes their sorrows
like a scavenger tearing into a fresh carcass,
gorging himself on all he can while he can
since one never knows when the next meal will come.

Basic desire to survive keeps the exiles alive,
though many mourn for the living rather than the dead.
Some still dream of finding a distant oasis,
but each day the Servant roars in their faces
that there is no escaping the touch of the drought,
only submission to its whims will earn them any mercy.
By instilling much fear and just a sprinkle of hope,
the Servant ensures they will stay one more day.

Some of the refugees have tried to flee,
but they are deafened by shrieking winds
that spit sand into their burning faces
and howl with laughter at their weakness.
Dry skin and brittle bones forget
the difference between blows and caresses
as reality and waking nightmares
become indistinguishable from each other.

Logic and reason shift and reform like sand dunes,
obscuring all signs of a path out of the wasteland.
The Servant relishes the people’s misery
as if their bitter curses were the sweet whispers of lovers.
As they all come to know the ebb and flow of their nightmare,
a precious few are finding ways to ride the tide
and fix their eyes on the open sky for any sign of clouds
and listen to the wind for breaths of the coming storm.

Copyright (C) 2012 by Eric Landuyt

1 comment:

  1. I really liked this. The descriptions of the drought were vivid and touched on many aspects, from the physical forms of the drought to the loss of sanity amongst the sufferers. What's confused me so far is the Servant: it's unclear who it is and the descriptions given aren't enough to make the question a matter of ambiguity. All clues given could also be said about the drought... so is the servant of the drought the drought, or what?