North Carolina, US
Amidst the ruins a child walks
Her hands are bloody, hopes are torn.
Roaming sharply shattered dreams
Through choking clouds of dust and ash.
Her head is bent, her spirit broken
Between the bodies of her brothers
She wanders in the barren streets
Searching for some spark of life.
Between her frail and gentle arms
A soiled baby watches
As the Earth burns
Through its little button eyes
And tattered woolen hair.
Her shoulders quiver as she stumbles
Over bodies here and there
Some familiar and some not
And little tear-drops wet the ground.
Above the skies are dead with clouds
No moon or starlight can shine through
To reach this wasteland and this child
The fires light the world tonight.
The young girl slips, she trips and falls
Sobbing in the bone-dry dirt.
The blaze burns on, unaware
Of the shining tears that strike the earth.
Then in a choking voice, in some low whisper nearly lost
She slipped her voice in some sad song
And the fires paused.
The rampant, razing ravager
Freezes in his rage.
Dead bodies lift their lifeless eyes
And listen silently.
The dark clouds scream, howl and spin
Pierced by points of blinding light.
Stars that stab with shining spears
Forcing back the endless night
Her tiny voice rings plaintive notes
Drifting sweetly in the air
The quiet song of one small girl
Born to a world of dark despair:
"Long ago there was girl
Lost in a world that should not be
She wondered why the world was wrong
Why love had been so hard to see."
And so she sang of all her troubles
Told the truth of all she would
She stared up, saw the stars and smiled
In a world she thought she never could.
And as each player moves their piece, confident and tall
They forget that they can move themselves, in the greatest game of all