A Tanto's Key

Written by: Tammy Armstrong

His blade cuts through the branches
the dark silence of the moment
bleeds through his kimono
as heavy breath stalks into zen
across the treetops spooks the owl 
	a tender footstep ~
a glimmer of steel and cushioned reunion
as a weapon draws into it's sheath.
The nights cool chill creeps across
moonlit shadows
As he sits in hungry silence,
just beyond the ray of light
that beckons him to shelter
beyond a shoji door.
and for a moment she's aware
of his desperate lover's stare,
but knowing he's a wanted man
reveals her gentle neck to him
beyond the screen he only sees
	the back of her ~
a crackle of the leaves below
a sudden shuffle
and she turns;
to glance into his longing eyes
stabbing torture through the leaves
	If only she would honor me.
She knows his pain but still remains
beyond the shoji door in shame
and in his voiceless plea he wakes;
and before their footsteps breach his pain
a tanto's key hung from his chest
where a heart that long since bled to death
once lay.