Among the Cypress Trees 


Along this dark and craggy path of dirt and stone, strewn among the cypress,
Where my days of wandering upon this good Earth had taken me.
There I met a spry, young child whose acquaintance I partook
He gave me the sense of inquisition, by the curiosity of a look.

“Play with me,” he said as innocent as a child should
“Yes, I will,” and play we did among the deep dark cypress.
A game of tag, follow the leader and lastly hide and seek
‘til fog and darkness obscured all vision and I could not find the sprite

“Where have you gone?” I cried out into the walls of twisted cypress
I heard laughing nearby, loud then fading, fleeting away in the night.
The boy was playing, that was all and I the willing tempter
I thought to frolic in darkness and fog may not be wise; I worried for the sprite.

Then up ahead at the top of the path, the child was in sight
He waved me on and I ran to the spot as he danced in merriment
He was glad I found him for then the game could go on, but I feared he would never tire
I for one was ready to move on and find my way from thick and shadowy forest

Then I saw something odd, the child; an apparition to my eyes
A wispy fog was the figure before me.
Fading from this world into the next, an incorporeal being,
A ghost of a thing that played among the cypress trees

I started to turn, to run in fear and loathing.
But saw nothing that could harm me.
Would that be the case, my doom would have been sealed,
When first I encountered this wispy sprite among the cypress trees.

The child turned back toward the path and bade me to follow
Deeper into the woods and glades, where thick the cypress grew
I followed unaware of any trouble, this young eidolon
Who I did not know or have any qualms about his true nature

Then up ahead a clearing at the end of the path led to a structure
A house stood idol and abandoned with trees laying across the top of the porch
It was as if the forest claimed it as its own and dared one to take it
A dark and foreboding vestige on this frontier of wooded cypress

I halted in mid stride, another step I would not take
“Why have you stopped?” the boy said
“I am afraid of what is to come and that house in the path before me.”
“Do not be afraid, I won’t let my kin have you,” he said

“What do you mean by your kin?” I said with shaky voice.
“My kin are the ones that haunt these woods and give me free reign,” he said
“They have been here all along, hiding among the cypress.
They followed us to this place, but you need not fear them.”

Sure enough, I saw figures start to appear, peeking around the massive trunks
And roots among the myriad of cypress trees.
They were numbered plenty and my fear was renewed
How was this sprite to help me or keep them at bay?

I had given to the fact that my fate was sealed as the kin surrounded me.
“What are we to do?” I said to the boy.
“I said you have nothing to fear from the kin, they will not attack what is mine.”
“What is yours? I don’t understand.”

“You will,” he said and smiled at me.
His teeth were too large for his head and protruded out of his mouth.
Saliva dripped from the tip of large fangs and I understood what he meant.
His kin would not bother me, because he laid claim to the prey he lured.

Perhaps he was more demon than ghost, this I’ll never know
For now, I walk among the kin and follow his moves
We are all just curious bystanders, victims of a fate we did not choose
Forever doomed to walk the path, among the cypress trees.