Rudis

The last foe falls in endless game
Victory lifts the hopeless struggle
And you find it all feels the same

Step forward and claim your prize
Oak branch twisted to mock blade
Set with feast for prying eyes
A mighty boast of higher grade

You fought for survival
Beneath cruel master’s leash
Now find your revival,
Or die within your niche

The flames were to burn
But just so they were to shape
To see the colors you could earn
What we might make of hopeless ape

Fighter cut from metal and stone
Forged with sand, tempered in dirt
Became a weapon they couldn’t own;
A person they could not hurt

Absolute victory stands before you now
The promise of peace, it was a lie
You will stand but not take your bow
Though it was not here, you will yet die

What we’ve made, a champion of the sand
A warrior stands removed from his plight
Things fall in place just as planned
You’ve gained freedom to choose your fight

You knew your struggle but not your stakes
The symbol of freedom is oaken sword
Wood for it to bend before it breaks
Blade because peace is not your reward

You will pay for victory with your life
Condemned to continue on the sand
In freedom you will yet choose strife
Hilt will once again find your hand

Join the battle for those yet in chain
Find a way to help cast their weight
For they are those that feel your pain.
For they are those that share your fate.

A symbol earned by knowing its name
show your rudis to all who’ll see
Only then could they know your claim
That we all might be set free

Broken Throne

When I decline their offer of cheer
I always wonder if they see the fear

A kindly gesture met with refusal
Chilled bomb within grasp
My very own Mozel Tov cocktail
Terror clawing at sanity’s clasp

Do they see me wrestle the wheel
Take the right turn on the wrong street
Committing a sin against my song
Trying to resist my own beat

Craving the sweet taste of submission
Wash of failure drowning out that fight
Momentary charade of peace in the land
Shield blinding from the reality of blight

When guards are down sleeping shallow
Silent invaders seize their opportunity
Disguising themselves as if they should be
Uniting all of me in peaceful toxic unity

A silent war hid snuggly beneath gaze
Carried on the back for all else to know
Yet we find the truth of our betrayal in our folly
Naming our enemy for a chance to grow

At the end of the road is recovery
Yet the journey stands hollow and alone
A civil war raging for a new king
To hope the close lends no broken throne

Still I wonder what people think
When I tell them I don’t drink

A reason to live

Remember the day that you died
And realize how you lived

By cherishing each tick of clock’s hand
And all the hurt that it may bring
Because the silence of winter’s stand
Is why it’s so good when spring sings

By grasping all whom you love
And showing all those you may
That their warmth brought your need to leave
So you demanded that you’d stay

By embracing the venom in your veins
Like sweet wine the summer sends
Eyes brightened by the taste of the moment
With no regard for how the party ends

You made love to your mortality
Like a girl that’s way out of your league
Savoring every moment of her favor
Because you already knew she’s gonna leave

So

If you’re just dust in the wind
Then gather a storm
Let your winds tear open your comfort
Because you’ve no time to mourn

If you’re but a candle to be consumed by the dark
Then let that light grow to swallow it whole
push the threat of the cold to the horizon
And color it with the splendor of your soul

If you’re a spark in a furnace
Then listen to the rhythm of hammer swings
Accepting the blessing of unbearable heat
So you can be forged from terrible things

If you’re a memory to be forgotten
Let it be one of passion and rage
Rampaging through time like a heckled actor
Betrayed by the very promise of your stage

Dance across the unlit sky
Leave your footprints between the stars
And burn your name in to eternity
Painting the heavens with your scars

The flaw of the immortal is mediocrity
With no need to act for lack of an end
Everything to see and nothing to fear
Is just having no message to send

Plant a kiss on the jaws of death
Thanking them for the chance to prove
That competing against certain defeat
Can be the perfect reason to move 

Fight with one determination
To move from the ledge and instead
You’ll just take a different leap
And if you don’t,
then you’re already dead