by Ariel Douglas (July 2016)
Every morning it’s the same
The two sit together, just inside the door
Like two medieval soldiers taking the night watch
At the gate to the palace.
Seated, yes, the soldiers are seated
But not from laziness
Oh, what these two soldiers wouldn’t give
At their post instead.
These two soldiers sit at their post
Watching each other’s backs
Waiting for the inevitable attack
That sometimes goes unnoticed
By the inhabitants of the castle.
These two soldiers sit
On their steeds of iron, pleather, and rubber
They chat, but their eyes still twitch
Surveying their post for possible threats
Two soldiers at their post
Waiting for the bell to sound
Calling them into battle.
Oh, how many have doubted them?
Shamefacedly, I must admit
That I have been numbered in those ranks
“Weak” is the catchphrase
Whispered behind hands
But no! I won’t allow it!
For it there is one word that ne’er will describe them
It is the word “weak”.
Their armor is thick and scarred
But that is not evident to an untrained eye
Swords made of plastic, steel, and rubber
A shield wielded in the form of life
But, alas, their crude armor is despised
And “rude”, “whiny”, “annoying” become their labels
These two soldiers take on
The fiercest and heaviest of blows from all sides
But somehow survive to take up their post again tomorrow.
These soldiers are mere children
As I, myself, still am
The castle is their school
And also their battle ground
Their swords and shields
Are crutches and oxygen machines
Their steeds their trusty wheelchairs
And everyday they fight a battle few can understand
“Strong!” I say, more so than you or I
For somehow each morning they have strength to come and man their guardpost.