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Fifteen bandsmen stand in line,
their linen white as flour,
their uniforms are stiff as death
and ready at the hour.

The weather casts a sullen mood
the air is very still,
the clouds withhold their tears for
they know its not a drill.

A rusty trumpet crudely blares,
to spit its splitting cry,
and suddenly disturbs the air:
three crows take to the sky,

Three crows! I knew that was the sign,
I saw it in my dreams,
I heard the flutter of their wings
I heard their mocking screams

Once hidden, now look where they perch
across the gallows beam
Three corvine friends attend my death;
how pleasant this must seem.

As Heav'n in answer to my prayer,
could find no crueler jape,
to see her son escorted thus
on this divined escape.

The air is cold, the world is calm
the journey is not far;
A few more steps, then sudden looms
my waiting gallows bar.

The fifteen bandsmen stand in line,
and tap their tiny drums,
this is the music of the damned,
the mad, incessant thrum.

Do not feel bad that I am gone,
my love, don't cry for me.
Before the seventh hour is past
my spirit will be free.

Then I shall roam with wind and rain
and visit you at night,
to kiss you on your little lips
before the morning's light.

Do not bring flowers to my grave,
nor search for my tombstone,
I'll share my cave with many men;
I will not be alone.

There's just one thing I'll ask of you,
for all the joy I brought,
a promise you will not make me
another afterthought.

For many come, and many go
but I, I will remain,
you'll see my face in every pool
and hear me in the rain.

Style / type: 
Structured: Western
Review Request (Intensity): 
I want the raw truth, feel free to knock me on my back
Review Request (Direction): 
What did you think of my title?
How was my language use?
What did you think of the rhythm or pattern or pacing?
How does this theme appeal to you?
Editing stage: 


This is a great poem, language great, rhythm and pattern great, title great. Just a very very good poem,. Regards Roscoe...

Roscoe Llane,

Religion will rip your faith off, and return
for the mask of disbelief that's left.

for liking it. It's the third in a recent string of poems I've written with similar meter and rhyme. A friend described it as belonging to the "Last moments of the condemned" genre.


No verse is free for the man who wants to do a good job. - TS Eliot

author comment

... in my reading in an attempt to become a better (or indeed a proper) poet I came across one text in which the author used to quote his own teacher. And one of his favourite quotes was,, "So what?"

I agree with Roscoe (above) it reads well and everything seems just right; but where is it taking us, so what? I always find myself asking this of my own work in order to complete the poem. I note this is a rough draft, is there possibly another stanza?

... I have just realised there is a short version and a full version - very confusing. PLease ignore my remarks

No problem mate. :)

No verse is free for the man who wants to do a good job. - TS Eliot

author comment

Thanks but I do feel a right prune. I did not realise, I was reading and then I wasn't - it seemd to have finished. Well I will know next time, I think?

The poem is just a glimpse into the last moments of a lover's life. It's a sweet romantic snippet that isn't supposed to take anyone anywhere.

It's entire purpose was to delight the senses, nothing more, nothing less.

No verse is free for the man who wants to do a good job. - TS Eliot

author comment
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