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The man in the black hood

Updated on June 21, 2013
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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.






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    • Cantuhearmescream profile image

      Cat 4 years ago from New York

      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

    • writinglover profile image

      Jennifer 4 years ago from Lost...In Video Games

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

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image

      Kathryn 4 years ago from Manchester, Connecticut

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

      Have a fantastic weekend, Wayne!

      ~ Kathryn

    • wayne barrett profile image
      Author

      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

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

    • Cantuhearmescream profile image

      Cat 4 years ago from New York

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

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

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

    • wayne barrett profile image
      Author

      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you very much, writing lover.

    • wayne barrett profile image
      Author

      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

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

    • Cantuhearmescream profile image

      Cat 4 years ago from New York

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

    • James-wolve profile image

      Tijani Achamlal 4 years ago from Morocco

      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

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 4 years ago from Shelton

      your best so far wayne barrett...:)

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 4 years ago from southern USA

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

    • wayne barrett profile image
      Author

      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      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.

    • Vellur profile image

      Nithya Venkat 4 years ago from Dubai

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

    • epigramman profile image

      epigramman 4 years ago

      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

    • wayne barrett profile image
      Author

      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you Frank.

    • wayne barrett profile image
      Author

      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you dear Faith.

    • ocfireflies profile image

      ocfireflies 4 years ago from North Carolina

      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 profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you, Vellur.

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      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 profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

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

    • Anna Haven profile image

      Anna Haven 4 years ago from Scotland

      This was so good.

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

      Voted awesome!

      Anna

    • AudreyHowitt profile image

      Audrey Howitt 4 years ago from California

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

    • Marlin 55 profile image

      Marlin 55 4 years ago from USA

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

    • phdast7 profile image

      Theresa Ast 4 years ago from Atlanta, Georgia

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

    • dghbrh profile image

      deergha 4 years ago from ...... a place beyond now and beyond here !!!

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

    • sereseus profile image

      Albin Pius 4 years ago from kerala,India

      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..

    • wayne barrett profile image
      Author

      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you so much, Anna Haven.

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

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

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      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.

    • PHILLYDREAMER profile image

      Jose Velasquez 4 years ago from Lodi, New Jersey

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

    • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

      Gypsy Rose Lee 4 years ago from Riga, Latvia

      Voted up and beautiful. An incredible and fascinating piece.

    • wayne barrett profile image
      Author

      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Theresa, thank you very much for the visit.

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you Deergha!

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

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

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 4 years ago from Central Florida

      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 profile image
      Author

      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you, Jose.

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you Rasma.

    • Danieltastic profile image

      Daniel James Hinton 4 years ago from Orlando, Florida

      Hell of a piece man, excellent work

    • wayne barrett profile image
      Author

      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

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

    • James-wolve profile image

      Tijani Achamlal 4 years ago from Morocco

      Thanks for the explanation!

      Have a wonderful week!

    • nwolf93 profile image

      Nicholas Wolf 4 years ago from Dana Point, California

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

    • ImKarn23 profile image

      Karen Silverman 4 years ago

      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

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Daniel, thank you for the compliment.

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you nwolf.

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      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.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 4 years ago from Stillwater, OK

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

    • wayne barrett profile image
      Author

      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you Deb

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

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

    • wayne barrett profile image
      Author

      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

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

    • Romeos Quill profile image

      Romeos Quill 4 years ago from Lincolnshire, England

      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 profile image
      Author

      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

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

    • MrsBrownsParlour profile image

      Lurana Brown 4 years ago from Chicagoland, Illinois

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

    • wayne barrett profile image
      Author

      Wayne Barrett 4 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you Lurana.

    • shanmarie profile image

      Shannon 3 years ago from Texas

      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 profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 3 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      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.

    • shanmarie profile image

      Shannon 3 years ago from Texas

      Perhaps you should write that novel!

    • joedolphin88 profile image

      Joe 3 years ago from north miami FL

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

    • wayne barrett profile image
      Author

      Wayne Barrett 3 years ago from Clearwater Florida

      Thank you, Joe.

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      crissalina 2 years ago

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

    • wayne barrett profile image
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      Wayne Barrett 2 years ago from Clearwater Florida

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

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