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Mute but immutable. Unmoving, unmoveable; timeless, yet tireless. Solitary stalwart sentinel surveils undulating horizon. Aberrant, achromatic clouds pock-mark the skies, as distant rumblings herald his adversary's latest gambit in their age-old conflict. The wrath of a thousand crashing, clashing, thrashing fists batter against the beleaguered sentry. Ceaselessly, remorselessly, the maelstrom assails him. But the foundations are firm and noble gatekeeper stands steadfast. Single-minded of purpose, placid custodian morphs into combatant as his luminous, voluminous blade carves luminescent arcs through chthonic cloak. Tenebrous tendrils wither and dissipate, impotent under intense lambent onslaught. His victory is only fleeting, as vanquished foes are summarily supplanted by more of their ilk in a seemingly continual surge. Again and again, over and over, tormentor presses the attack, exploiting any weakness. Over and over, again and again, valiant warden repels the barrage and despatches his enemies. And so the pattern repeats endlessly, unabated, as these eternal opponents jostle for position in a perpetual cycle of aggression and defence. Until eventually, finally, ultimately, the stale-mate is broken; when Tempest's tantrum is tamed and Blizzard's battalions have been banished, all is calm. Tranquillity is able to reassert herself and order has finally been restored; at least for the foreseeable future. Obligations fulfilled, the triumphant Guardian can now rest. Until the need arises again, until he's called upon once more, he will wait patiently, watch diligently, in unflagging vigilance. Forever resolute, a beacon of sanctuary, a symbol of hope, his is a thankless task, but the Protector of Mariners will always be needed. ----------------------------------- (C) John C Michaels, 27 July 2017 For Eve Roper's "Lighthouse" Contest. (1st Place)

Copyright © John Michaels