Burning wicks, flickers of light,

Candles drooping in their weight,

Heat emanating from little fires,

Rolls down into embalming wax,

Knotted wooden doorways,

Courtyard of mirrored doors,

Leading multiple paths,

Freedom trapped in dark rooms,

Peering to the outside,

In a deep dark night.

Doors half-open, half-closed,

Swaying and whispering,

Nothingness forming incessant howls,

Foreteller of storms about to hit.

Lashing knotted doors with messages,

Carried to the child’s face,

Frail hands, cold, numbed

Holding the magic lantern.

Shadows falling on child’s face,

Dancing flickers of light,

Moving noiselessly, fluidly

Perfect motion and balance,

Carry messages of faith, fate, tall tales,

From half open doors and dark rooms,

Registering fear on the child’s face,

Losing perspective of the day,

Living only in the night.

Noises in the distance,

Cries of fear, howls of despondency,

Victims of the night, Lifeless in new days.

Sounds mixed in, amplified and strange,

Death and murderous melody,

Joined from the outside, pours in –

Through dark rooms

Half opened swaying doorways.

Child trapped in an empty courtyard,

Hold the swaying doors,

Eyelids clenched close in fear,

Tugs against the wind,

Closes each mirrored door,

Shuts himself from fear,

Carnage of the night.

Holding his magic lantern close,

Wishing the flickers of light,

Empty heat from burning wicks,

Clears the noise from outside,

Leaves emptiness of silence,

Doors close – the night by itself.

The child, drained from fear,

Can now sleep in nothingness,

Holding his magic lantern, in nightly dreams.

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