cobweb

four drab women
Want Hardship Worry Guilt
wait somewhere far away


a person is born
grows
starts a family
builds a home


the four ghouls
wait
hidden in the foundations


they build for the person
a second home
a labyrinth
in a blind alley


the person lives loves
prays and works
fills the home with hope
tears laughter
and care


the four drab women
play hide-and-seek with him
they lurk in chests
wardrobes bookcases


they feed on gloves dust
kerosene mud
they eat books
fade drab and quiet
by icy moonlight
they sit on paper flowers
the children clap
trying to kill a moth
but the moths turn into silence
the silence into music


the four drab women wait


the person invites
other people
to christenings funerals
weddings and wakes
silver and gold anniversaries
the four drab women
enter the home uninvited
through the keyhole


first to appear is Guilt
behind her looms Worry
slowly there grows Want
baring her teeth comes Hardship


the home becomes a cobweb


in it are heard voices groans
gnashing of teeth
buzzing


the awakened gods
drive off
importunate humans
and yawn


From: Szara Strefa [Gray Zone], Wydawnictwo Dolnoílskie, 2002


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