Thursday 21st October 2010, A. Palmer
He sits upon his creaking throne-
Quiet, thorn-faced, his sturdy frame regressing on its own.
The unmaimed messenger had left through a side door;
The completed exit was still echoing along its dusty tour,
Ringing off crevices to fill the void left by the words, only four
But none more assassin-like could ever enter one’s head:
By the second, he had known what further two were ahead,
And had turned so as to try to avoid the stab all would dread-
Short pause, as long as a lifetime, before, “your son is dead.”
He had bore pleadingly into the other’s eyes, longing for a sign
That a mishearing had occurred somewhere along the line
Or along the three feet of desk, or perhaps the two combined.
But it had not been present, only one who dared not recline
Nor rise to rash urges to opine.
They had waited to be dismissed, some wait given the shock they’d had to air
And try as they might, there had been little they’d been able to prepare
To cushion the collapse of his resolve when the disbelief became despair
So they had left unnoticed whilst telephone, intray and tears crashed everywhere
Before all fell deathly still, save for closing door and creaking cathedra, or chair-
Kingdom crushed like a child beneath a car, it’s no throne without an heir.