#HumpDay #StitchedSaturday – 2/20/19 – James Matthew Byers


from impellitteri metal archives

The Wrath of Kanus


The Wolves and Jackals led the way

With Kanus in the front.

To conquer Lions and hold at bay

The Tigers on the hunt,

The tribes of Dogma had aligned,

The Foxes, Hounds, and more-

And of them all but one defined

The will to do the chore.

Upon his breast, a ruby hung

Empowering his might.

Barbarian genetic tongue

Exposed his wrathful spite.

The Lions had slain his pack when he

Was but a newborn pup.

Those Battle Cats were by decree

A feast he would lick up.

The Rocky crags of Castle Bone

Eclipsed the army led,

And Kanus soon would claim the throne

Before the Cats were dead.

Uniting all the Dogs as one

Had been an easy task.

Revenge sat dawning as a sun

In which the Wolf would bask.

The Otherworld had long been calm,

But now upon his call,

A conquered nation in his palm

Awaited death to fall.

The Sloths had found him when as a child,

The Witches of the Wood,

Devoting spells unto the wild,

And yet he understood.

A power from the three who chose

To keep him in their care

Forever changed and would expose

A depth of witty flare.

Intelligence and feral strength

Combined within his soul,

And thus the Witches went the length

To seek his future goal.

The gem within his armor strap

Began to glow and swirl.

A toothy grin spoke of the trap

His minions would unfurl.

Beyond the ridge, the Lions would wait,

The Panthers by their side.

The Tigers held a different fate,

Engrossed with their own pride.

And still the lot would see his wrath

For he did not divide.

The Battle Cats were all one path,

And none of them could hide.

However, there was one perhaps

Among them who could give.

Bengalla, maker of the maps

Of tales and myths may live.

A legend Kanus longed to be,

And of all in the land,

No other spun with poetry

The same as was his brand.

The Tiger Bard was world renowned,

So he could serve the cause,

But only if his will was bound.

If not, no need to pause.

Another dead would be no loss.

As Kanus looked away,

A thunderstorm began to toss

And set night underway.

From in the sheath upon his back,

A sword of bone and steel

Began to pulse from blue to black

As if it seemed to feel.

The ruby glowing hissed a word

And Kanus raised his sword.

The Witches voices softly heard

Proposed a wicked chord.

The scar across his right eye singed

From one fight long ago

Reminded him that all this hinged

On Magic’s ebb and flow.

He walked ahead and out of sight

And then from in the gem,

The Witches Three appeared in light

And gathered next to him.

A silence fell asleep from the scar

Escaping all around

Enchanted Aura as a star

Embraced what it had found.

The color red began to grow

And cover his design.

The gifts the Aura would bestow

Began an eerie shine.

As chanted spells were slowly sung,

The Sloths dispersed in air

And left the Wolf whose sword was swung

About in firmest care.

And so he turned and howled commands

Directing without slack.

The Wrath of Kanus filled the lands,

And none would break his Pack …





The Horsemen’s Ride


The Horsemen rose from tombs in flare,

The woods afire by night.

Atop the rush as strode each mare

Extinguishing the light

Within the forest never seen,

Escaping death’s design,

The Horsemen prodded, boldly keen,

Aware of evil’s shrine.

Another master summoned them,

Unable to resist.

A cauldron simmered, going dim-

Another called assist.

Falasia mastered many things,

But what she needed most

Became the hull of deathly stings;

An army and a ghost.

The Horsemen did as they were told,

As liches they were bound

To any whom their wares were sold,

For those who called were found.

Beyond the moonlit covering,

Beyond the wooded veil,

The Horsemen rode while hovering

Above their former jail.

As freedom singed the clean sinews

And bones would crack and pop,

The pathway turned to fading hues,

But none of them could stop.

Falasia heralded them come,

And come the Horsemen would.

In spirit, they had all gone numb,

A feeling understood.

Another ride, another fight,

Another forceful aim.

And still they missed no single stride,

And still the Horsemen came.

The number equaled twenty-four,

The same as when in life.

The Horsemen came to do the chore;

To bring the slashing knife.

At last Falasia met the glow

Of each enchanted horse.

She gawked and swooned from head to toe.

Her plan held no remorse.

She sent them to the Tiger-clan,

As her Lord bade her do.

Destruction was the final plan;

Destruction through and through.

An image from her cauldron burned

To guide them on their way.

A fleeting sense of evil churned

And they were set to slay.

A hollow voice escaped the teeth

Of one who led the charge.

“My brothers, make this battle brief!

We need not be at large!”

Attire unlike the others kept,

His helmet concealed eyes

That blazed and at the same time wept

Within his dead disguise.

A wispy cloth of searing white

Concealed the hidden truth-

The fangs that once were used to bite

Were now but hollow proof

The Smilodons had ever been-

Those saber-toothed at birth.

He looked behind and felt chagrin;

He longed to know his worth.

The skeletal remains denied

The past except for rage.

And now he would go battle pride,

A beast freed from a cage.

Fatalis knew the cycle well-

To rise, and fall, and rise.

A captive of an ancient spell,

He was the chosen prize.

And so he and his kin adhered,

No hope of sleep or rest.

The Tiger-clan had been revered,

But they would be no test.

The Vultures circled in the sky-

Perhaps they smelled decay.

No matter, as he could not die,

Fatalis led the way.

Beyond the border stood the gate

And as the Horsemen strode,

The battle coming spoke of fate

As into it, they rode.

A mist appeared about them there

And covered all around.

No undead foot or feral mare

Was seen, nor could be found.

And so Fatalis held the scene

And sent his kindred on

Into the land of in between

To take from Acmar’s throne …





The Darque Bard, James Matthew Byers, resides in Alabama. He has been published in poetry journals and through Jacksonville State University in Jacksonville, AL, where he received his Master’s in 2010. His epic poem, Beowulf: The Midgard Epic, was his first release from Stitched Smile Publications, LLC. James designed and illustrated the cover and interior art for this and his current release, Voyeurs and Vultures. James is the SSP poetry acquisitions editor. He also has a short story featured in their release, Unleashed: Monsters Vs. Zombies. James has won four Prose Challenges at http://www.theprose.com. He is published in Weirdbook Magazine and in Grievous Angel ezine. He has a poem in Heroic Fantasy Quarterly issue 35. He won or placed in numerous contests at the Alabama State Poetry Society. He continues to write prolifically, supporting anyone who wishes to place their hammering fingers to the keyboard anvil, becoming a polished wordsmith in the process.


Find James Matthew Byers at:

Twitter: http://www.Twitter.com/TheDarqueBard



Facebook: https://m.facebook.com/Mattbyers40/

WordPress: http://jamesmatthewbyers.wordpress.com

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