A Thief is Born
Son of a Noble but waif of the street,
I took to stealing so mother could eat.
This kind, caring woman went one winter more.
But spring saw The Reaper at our humble door.
Sellers and guardsmen missed not copper coins,
Apples and sweet breads and hand maids purloined.
I took a rumor from a maid’s lips in bed
Of splendid gold dagger with hilt of jewels red.
Enchanted by Heron, a wizard, the best,
Inlaid with silver and spells to protect.
His treasure the envy of light-fingered thieves,
An irresistible challenge to a half-noble breed.
To seek out this dagger against the guild’s wish
Might cost me a post on their pick-pocket list.
Fierce repercussions from Heron The Great,
His undue attention could wreak a sad fate.
Headstrong or stubborn or too young to care,
I formed a plan that could work if I dare.
A sewer grate path from his fosse to the street,
His plain tower wall, no real trick to defeat.
At dawn I descend into the dank depths,
The city’s disposal, a bleak labyrinth.
Through dim corridors of waste ridden stone,
To reach the black waters of his moat-ed home.
Word is that Heron works long through the night,
Retires to chambers at morning’s first light.
Taking advantage of his slumber state,
I slither up stonework and over the gate.
Ravens on Gargoyles peer down from their perch,
Eyeing my progress and deft hands at work.
Man made devices turn to my lock-pick
The air of his quarters with magic are thick.
Scents of concoctions are foul on my lungs.
Draping each wall, wicked tapestries hung.
Depictions of dancers devoured by beasts,
Half-human demons with virgins for feast.
The main hall is paved in a large pentagram,
Congested oak table wears bare skull of Man.
Vials of all colors, and books leather bound,
Heron’s dark secret of witchcraft be found.
A blood-stained bronze basin, its use I can guess,
Beside the jeweled dagger in a red silk lined chest.
This evil tableau sparks a light in my mind,
Strengthens my nerve, but chills run my spine.
I reach for the dagger and at my first touch
A luminous aura dims crimson to dust.
A candle behind me, a whisper of steps,
Turning I face a grand master adept.
Thief! You’ll bear with you this curse to your grave
Take to the darkness, by light be betrayed.
Cling to the shadows, you light finger fool,
Leave now my dwelling or see your blood pool.
I take in my hand this dark tool of the damned.
And strike a black heart in malevolent man.
I flee from the knife where it pins him to rest
Fearing what devils may heed his last breath.
I feel his curse working and run for the wood.
My will is a weapon to wield and I should,
Ward off the power of words that he gave,
Words I must carry now unto my grave.
Penny-less thief, no home have you now.
Though justified, murder must weigh on your brow.
Seek out the shade ‘neath the trees, tarry not,
For rays of the sun seem unbearably hot.