James Roberts (21 October 1981 / Saginaw, Michigan)
Colder Than Ice
Two brothers sat along the shore,
On the beach of the lake
They had loved in their youth,
And they looked at the horizon,
Looking at the sunset,
Seeing the beauty it brought.
But the brothers sat apart,
Keeping off their distance,
For they still had enmity,
Especially on this warm day.
They did not sit close together,
For they had nothing in common,
And they shared no love,
And their hatred flourished within them.
But the two brothers had come for a reason,
Though with great reluctance,
For their wives had forced them to come,
And so now they had to make a deal.
The elder brother was medium height,
With long blond hair and blue eyes;
He was quite wise and always tried peace,
No matter what came at him.
He was slow to anger,
Thoughtful and insightful,
But absent-minded at times,
He was devout in his faith,
And still tried to forgive his brother.
The elder was a humble writer,
One who expressed his beliefs
Yet he held the truth
The youth did not quite see.
The youth, or the younger brother,
Was a man of profound looks,
He was kind to women,
Along with his wife,
And he was good to his children,
He was brave and full of courage,
His blond hair fell down past his ears,
His bangs long and flowing,
He was very tall,
His brown eyes were gleaming with pride,
And the youth was an aristocrat.
The youth spoke thus to the elder,
'What is it that you want, brother?
My life, is that what you want,
Or is it my soul, my death,
My money, my power, my honour,
My family, my wealth, and my heart?
Speak to me, you insolent fool,
For you are a disgrace to the family,
And you care for nothing but yourself.
You have not guided me,
Nor have you helped me in any way.
All you ever did was neglect,
And you were always like Father,
Never caring for others.'
The older spoke to him thus:
'My dear brother,
I am sorry I failed you,
I tried to help you in every way possible,
I tried to help you cope with reality,
I tried to help you stand your trial,
I tried to protect you from Father,
I did, I tried, and I failed.
I am sorry for your anger,
If you will, please forgive me.'
The youth spoke to him,
For his heart was colder than ice:
'Brother, I cannot forgive you,
And, frankly, I never will,
You nearly screwed up my life,
You disgraced the family,
And you hurt everyone in your path.
All i care about is disappearing.
I don't care about where you go,
Just stay far away from me,
And go die somewhere.'
With this, the youth left,
And the elder stared at the horizon,
Thinking deeply about his past.
Comments about this poem (Colder Than Ice by James Roberts )
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