Le Petit Chevalier

The little knight
Stands alone
Her breath is
Mist in the
Board made of cold air
Criss-crossed
And jagged extremes
Of black and white
Stretched before her
All or nothing,
They whisper,
All or nothing. 

Across the pawns start to advance
And the little knight
Takes up her armor
Trying to duck and
Weave behind the
Shining orbs of dark
Sparks, blinding stars 
Get yourself together!
Where have your senses gone?

The horse paws the
Ground
It’s heart
Stamping and skittering
Eyes becoming more wild
By the second
Swans fly overhead
And the sun sets
Over the horizon
A world still flat
Currents flowing
Of endless moves and
Countless possibility,
Falling, cascading over-
What happens at the edges? 

Soon the Rooks
Slide across the board
Trying to trap the knight
So that she’s like cornered prey
Darting back and forth
In cycles
All the while howling,
I just want to get to the edge! 

Bishops lace black and white
Like lightning
A storm of diagonals
The knight could destroy
But she’s falling behind
Because of
India or Thailand? Bali?
Emory isn’t glamorous-
Only because she can’t think straight
Her breath is a frenzy,
obscuring her vision as the
Shapes fly across the world

Then the Queen,
Queen of Hearts,
Who leaves a trail of tears and
Blood
With dread the knight
Sees her slowly move-
A shark-
White eyes, black
One place, then three
She’s a finicky one
The board and all
Its pathways are
Hers
With her hourglass curves and
Your sister is too perfect
With her shapeshifting eyes
And the disguise of
“Fair is foul, foul is fair”
Wolf in sheep’s skin
With her lures and baits
The edges of cliffs,
Oh god! Is she
At the end of the board too? 

There is no solace for the knight
Sleepless under endless skies
Lonely on the board
Where there seems to be no king
On either side,
No objective to fight for
Other than getting to the other end
Past the shifting labyrinth
Of nothings,
Of games,
Of everythings.

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