A Badge of Honour

     Two scores and ten years,

She has been on the field.

The great market of struggles.

Once a year, there came a knock.

Thrice, then nothing.

     Some weeks ago, twelve souls died.

One gone for each month.

She cried for days,

Folks in town grew used to it.

Yet, wondered what varmint had been cruel.

Day in and out, they waited silently for the next soul.

     Bloating stomach,

Swollen feet,

Laboratory tests have no cause for it. 

She didn’t let him in the door,

paid for his demise.

Even after he promised he wouldn’t take anything precious.

     He slept in a corner, curled up.

When he awoke, he was stronger and sneaky.

He looked like the agent of doom; satan’s gift to mankind as he attacked with vengeance.

He broke her off and devoured her organs.

     Seeing things only victims could.

Grave dug, tears flowing.

Her gaze utters messages only the heart could connect.

At the sky, she smiled,

You’d think she’d be happy.

Only this time, she was petrified by the cold face of death. 

     I, her only hope to battle the beast,

I knew what I wanted.

To get her out of there, it was like pie in the sky.

Her heart went with me,

But her body, tired now and weary, took her back to the grave.

     And before he left,

He whispered his name.

Behold, dreaded cancer.

Yet, it didn’t matter.

For he has taken my beloved.

Alas! she didn’t get on in years.

     For her pain, she was supposed to get a crown of life.

And for her suffering, a badge of honour.


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