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The man in the black hood

the-man-in-the-black-hood


Mournful, yet calming, she sang

a song, soothing, whispering on the wind,

soft, sorrowful, soulful,

carrying from her tender lips,

entrancing, lulling all that passed near.

Women wept

and hard men veiled misted eyes.

They labored under heavy loads

hauling wares and with trudging carts

they inched ever nearer,

nearer the sweet singing

but dared not touch, dared not speak

and kept eyes cast down

away from her, away from her

whose delicate hands grasped iron bars

from whence behind

her angelic face cast no blame.

Flowing hair the color of tearstained hay

wrapped itself around, to cover her shame.

A strand over her brow

curtains innocent countenance

and through the tresses

her voice still coos

to the despairing and the despondent,

the subjects of a princess beloved.

All hearts are darkened, dispirited, broken,

so even the man standing by

with trembling hand on large broadsword

and black hood tucked in his belt,

dreading, lifeless to his task

but knowing that to waver

would only bring another

who might not be as swift,

as accurate, as painless,

and he strains to avert his angry eye

from the court of heavy laden crown

of jewels and scepter which are no treasure

to the wearer like unto his daughter caged below

from which he must choose between

the innocent multitude of his realm.

A decision, a burden, laid upon him

by the robed figure in shadows

who unlike the others

cannot hear the song

but as the servant of a Papal Father

only hears the pulsing blood of promotion

and the jingling of gold coins

in a purse lined with blood and condemnation

of the inhabitants of this Mother Earth

who refuse to embrace his god,

his church and its inquisitions.

He hears not the lay,

the lament of one condemned

for refusing to pay homage,

to worship the idol,

the symbol that hangs from the priests neck,

so now her own is bared,

the delicate smooth neck,

for the swords sharp edge.

Drums roll and soldiers cry,

and a Kings judgment fails.

His paternal heart dies

as whistling sword sings.

Church bells ring.

The clergy man smiles

at the signal of triumph.

Church bells ringing

and his damned soul falls,

to follow the wrong god because

the man under the other black hood

never heard the singing.






Comments

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on September 17, 2014:

crissalina, I appreciate the kind words on this one. it is one of my favorites.

crissalina on September 17, 2014:

this is amazing! has beautiful rhytm - sings to the heart.

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on May 24, 2014:

Thank you, Joe.

Joe from north miami FL on May 23, 2014:

very pretty I feel like could be an expansion to this perhaps a part two

Shannon Henry from Texas on October 05, 2013:

Perhaps you should write that novel!

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on October 05, 2013:

Hi Shanmarie. Thanks foe the compliment and the visit. This piece has turned out to be one of my favorites. It feels like a synopsis to what could be a novel.

Shannon Henry from Texas on October 04, 2013:

Perhaps I just haven't read enough of your work, but this tragedy is a different tone than what you usually seem to produce. That said, I like it. It did take me a bit to figure out what was going on, though.

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 30, 2013:

Thank you Lurana.

MrsBrownsParlour on June 30, 2013:

Very powerful and beautifully written. Different voice than other pieces I've seen by you too. ~Lurana

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 29, 2013:

Romeos, thank you my friend. Yes, I am quite fond of this one!

Romeos Quill from Lincolnshire, England on June 29, 2013:

Your ' Magnum Opus'?

This one deserves to be framed, and adorn the wall.

Some marvelous, descriptive verse here, and no hesitation in sharing.

Have a cracking weekend;

Yours Sincerely,

Romeo's Quill

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 28, 2013:

Thank you Alicia. This is one of my favorites as well.

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on June 27, 2013:

This is a dramatic and intense poem that is full of emotion. I read it multiple times and loved it!

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 24, 2013:

Thank you Deb

Deb Hirt from Stillwater, OK on June 24, 2013:

Being forced to disown family for such a shallow piece of grace is unthinkable. Send me to the death first. Superbly done!

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 24, 2013:

Leslie, what a genuinely wonderful compliment. I was concerned about the length of this poem but its comments like yours that make me glad that I went ahead and posted it. You're a sweetheart and I thank you.

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 24, 2013:

Thank you nwolf.

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 24, 2013:

Daniel, thank you for the compliment.

Karen Silverman on June 23, 2013:

Wayne you are a Master. Period. Your skill at creating passionate and thought--provoking poetry is beyond the pale - and this could well be your 'Master'-piece! You got my heart beating and my blood flowing and my brain thinking.

Thank you!

tres magnifique!

sharing

Nicholas Wolf from Dana Point, California on June 23, 2013:

This is a beautiful and in depth piece of Poetry. Keep it up man!

Tijani Achamlal from Morocco on June 23, 2013:

Thanks for the explanation!

Have a wonderful week!

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 23, 2013:

Thank you very much Sha. I appreciate the nice compliments.

Daniel James Hinton from Orlando, Florida on June 23, 2013:

Hell of a piece man, excellent work

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 23, 2013:

Thank you Rasma.

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 23, 2013:

Thank you, Jose.

Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on June 23, 2013:

Wayne, your portrayal of history and lack of acceptance of those who did not succumb to the laws of religion is remarkable. My heart quickened and tears formed as I read. Very well written my friend!

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 23, 2013:

Thank you, Albin. I hope that you can find your inspiration.

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 23, 2013:

Thank you Deergha!

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 23, 2013:

Theresa, thank you very much for the visit.

Gypsy Rose Lee from Daytona Beach, Florida on June 23, 2013:

Voted up and beautiful. An incredible and fascinating piece.

Jose Velasquez from Lodi, New Jersey on June 23, 2013:

You brought this story to life. This feels like it could be the beginning of a good story.

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 23, 2013:

Marlin, i truly appreciate the visit. I have not forgotten about your Piranhas i the Attic. I have been extremely busy, but I like the story so I have you bookmarked as a reminder.

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 23, 2013:

Thank you Audrey. I'm always happy to have you chime in. : )

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 23, 2013:

Thank you so much, Anna Haven.

Albin Pius from kerala,India on June 23, 2013:

Truly a very professional touch here.Its so elaborate and vivid.I am in awe.Superb work.I hope this becomes my inspiration for my next poem.:)sharing it..

deergha from ...... a place beyond now and beyond here !!! on June 23, 2013:

Very nice write ...enjoyed the depth of it like always....votes up and shared:-)

Theresa Ast from Atlanta, Georgia on June 22, 2013:

Very well done with all the bitterness and pathos of great loss. Theresa

Marlin 55 from USA on June 22, 2013:

Wayne, beautiful poetry. Your descriptions are very vivid. This was great.

Audrey Howitt from California on June 22, 2013:

Beautiful imagery Wayne--I have to chime in with everyone else here

Anna Haven from Scotland on June 22, 2013:

This was so good.

Tragic, poignant and great imagery. There was a lot of power in your words.

Voted awesome!

Anna

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 22, 2013:

Thank you Kim. and a happy summer solstice to you as well.

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 22, 2013:

Colin, thank you for your wonderful compliments. I wish you all the best on you books and I hope you have a great weekend.

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 22, 2013:

Thank you, Vellur.

ocfireflies from North Carolina on June 22, 2013:

Wayne,

Absolutely Wow! Epic as Colin noted is so correct. Stellar Job! Voted Up and Awesome!

Best Always and Happy Summer Solstice!

Kim

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 22, 2013:

Thank you dear Faith.

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 22, 2013:

Thank you Frank.

epigramman on June 22, 2013:

This is some serious shit here Sir Wayne - lol lol lol lol

It usually takes me about 20 minutes or so to wrote 'most' of my pieces once I have the 'idea' of where I want to go with the piece BUT to write something as majestic and epic as this would take me 20 fookin' years.

To know that a great man of Sirdom, a world class artist and a legendary Hub poet has bought my book is right up there with spending a night with Pamela Lee Anderson and playing guitar with Lou Reed - it humbles me to my very core that you took the time to support me in that way so I will always be forever grateful to you Wayne.

Please say hello to your lovely family for me and give them hugs from the three of us - Colin and his cat crew and I will link and share and post this most beautiful piece of pure poetry to my FB page for all of the world to see/read.

Just up from night shift sleep with some baroque music and a pot of coffee at 1:05pm lake erie time canada

Syd Barrett? Man you go back a long way, lol lol, I saw Pink Floyd in Hamilton on their 1975 Wish you were here tour

Nithya Venkat from Dubai on June 22, 2013:

A great and a powerful poem. I can still hear the resounding church bells after reading your poem. Voted up.

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 22, 2013:

Hey, James. Thank you my man! This is a tale of a girl who refused to accept religion and so the clergy gave the king a choice; he either had to give his daughter over to the inquisitors, or his kingdom would fall. And then of course it is the overlay of Karma that comes with the choices by both king and priest.

Faith Reaper from southern USA on June 22, 2013:

Very intense and yet beautiful. I am gathering she is walking towards being beheaded?

Frank Atanacio from Shelton on June 22, 2013:

your best so far wayne barrett...:)

Tijani Achamlal from Morocco on June 22, 2013:

What a piece of write! Genius,top notch..superb !You better contact Loreena Mckennitt .She will love this poem and sing it I am sure.

Sir Wayne,does the downcast woman here have a scarlet letter ?

Have wonderful weekend!

James

Cat from New York on June 21, 2013:

lmao! (And I never say that!) :D

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 21, 2013:

Thank you so much, Kathryn, and may you have a wonderful weekend as well.

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 21, 2013:

Thank you very much, writing lover.

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 21, 2013:

Okay...I'll take that compliment, and I'll just leave you with this one thought; Boob!

Cat from New York on June 21, 2013:

'Too' would indicate undeserving... so I think I'm just right kind of kind :D

Wayne Barrett (author) from Clearwater Florida on June 21, 2013:

Thank you Cat. As always you are too kind, but I truly appreciate it.

Kathryn from Windsor, Connecticut on June 21, 2013:

This is sad, but beautiful. The imagery is stunning. Thanks for sharing this with us.

Have a fantastic weekend, Wayne!

~ Kathryn

Jennifer from Lost...In Video Games and Stories on June 21, 2013:

I loved it! It was beautiful in its own haunting way. Voted it up!

Cat from New York on June 21, 2013:

Wayne, this is truly a masterpiece; tragic and sorrowful, but beautifully written. I actually read it twice, just to soak it all in. What a powerful story, a lifetime written in just a few words.

'Flowing hair the color of tearstained hay' - who else would come up with that?

Impressed, as always!

Up and everything but funny... just couldn't find it in me :D

Sharing too!

Cat