Old Soldier's Nameless Friend
Old man sitting in his place
An old man, seasoned, sad, and weary, returns to his constant friend, the warming, nameless flames of his fireplace.
He's now ready to rest at season's end. Dreaming now of events like youth, love, bride, and life to begin.
He fashioned his fireplace with youthful hands, but no joy for he was called to death-trodden lands.
His lovely, young bride kept her house. Children clean and fed. And kept a warm fire burning gently as the three, like ghosts, sneaked into bed.
Her heart looked fearfully through her cracked window pane in hopes to see her groom in sight again, but duties of life ended her vision again and again.
While gazing into death's stone eyes, he crept in mud, shed his blood, for those without a home. And even for faceless corpses lie.
Years and youth are silent wings taking him through sunset's clear, Laughter, somber, sober, his ears have silenced, so are his years.
One day walking, next day crawling, his pride displays the medals won, a life well-run, he runs to his nameless friend, the nameless flame.
Children are gone. Crowning him with stone. His bride was never alone. Sitting hand-in-hand, a breath, a span. His dreams of friends gone to uncertain, ever-mystical lands.
He sleeps. He nods. And asks the shadows if she is there . . .with silk for hands, and linen for lands, his bride gently passes with time.
Now only two remain. His breath. His name.
And his oldest friend, the nameless fireplace flame.