The Shadow Man

The shadow-man, the Prince of Aquitaine / from his dark tower is condemned to see / all, or all shall cease to be.

For his sins, which were legion, he was deprived / of all that made him human. He must / watch at this window for ever, forever weeping.

Music, he has. The lute he loved is strewn with stars / but his own star is dead; his days are ruled / by the black sun of melancholy.

In stairwells, fountains play; the wall is lined / with all books ever made. What can words signify to one / with forever to read them, no one to tell them to?

His nights are terror-bright, there is no sleeping. / Though this sin crown all others, he prays / that the world might end, or he: it is the same.

Though time and battles scar the tower wall it’s standing yet / and never shall it fall. Nor prayer or pitying ever free / the man with all creation in his keeping.






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