Who calls at my door,
this dark and rainy night too bleak for passage,
and yet a figure appears; I shudder, he
shadowed by hood and hunched upon the stoop?
What say you shadow upon my stoop,
this night entreats no-one to bare,
so what nightmare news have you to tell,
for me to see a reason bound?
With drips of rain from hood and shoulder flow,
a shadowed face did speak,
in low and guttural tones, as if a spectre’s groan,
and I listened, half a feared, have intrigued,
but nonetheless with heart so prone for strife.
‘May I have a glass of water, please?’ he asked,
my face a crumpled disagreement front,
‘With all this water, have you not enough?’ I replied,
as he cleared his thought and said it once again.
Silence played a waiting game,
as discomfort climbed to higher peaks,
and with nothing more to say I just fetched the water,
and with hesitancy handed it to this bleak shadow,
this discreet hooded thirst.
He drank it down quickly, gulping with fervent glee,
as if thirst had stolen all he had, and I the restorer be,
and giving him this saving grace,
had somehow saved his very soul.
Handing back the glass,
he nodded thanks and silently went on his way,
and as his shadow dissolved in night,
I stood there speechless, not a word to say.
To this day I do not understand,
in torrents of rain and blackest night a thirst unquenched
did raise a hand, for help;
and I did satisfy the request
from a figure dark, a shadow man,
on bleakest night, in the village of old Barain.
Tony DeLorger © 2016