Kings and Serfs

Wilhelm Klein

Knights, Rajas, priests and sorcerers,
Not to forget collectors and the chieftains of the clans
Wear resplendent robes.
Bards and genealogists, croniclers and sculptors
Praise the supremacy of their blood
And are well rewarded.

Peasants, serfs and commoners
Of low castes and class
Weave the gowns and then applaud
Those who wear and tear in splendor
What they had sewn, sown and harvested
Sobbing in sweat.
The robes have changed, so has the regimen
And the domains.
The game, we see, indeed, remains the same.

The crowd is fed with food of short-lived joys
From which it then appears
With bending heads that dare not
Look into the stern and slavish eyes
Of oppressors and their courtiers.

The penetration of the mind supplanted
Swords and gallows of times past
And while the tyrants
Sacrifice compassion,
Believing in what they have to do,
Slaves find solace in the myth
Of a fair and clement afterworld.
Thus in revolving chess-mate, history goes on.

Lifting the dazzled gaze
From the game board's sparkling glitz,
The mandala comes into view
Where here and now
Neither kings nor serfs exist.
Only the shared beauty of a life serene
In which those who come
And those who once have been
Are pearls on a string,
Woven together
With the water, earth and sun
Of which we are a part.


William's poetry Blog EAST 100. Photo Source


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