I was there when you preened,
standing gloating over the wounds you made.
Arrayed in your finest: crown, sceptre, rings,
a king with bloodied livery displayed.
But I was there, waiting, afraid, I stayed,
waiting for the day to come,
for justice to be repaid.
What justice is there under the sun,
that can undo the spoils that you have won?
You are counted, numbered, weighed.
Your days measured and cut short,
by celestial blade.
I was there, you see, keeping watch,
waiting for old roots to shoot.
A shadow below the waves,
a watcher in the shade.
Be careful what bones you seed in slivers.
Be careful what hurt you cause, what strive,
what blood you sew in far off rivers,
even the Styx gave forth life.
Charl Landsberg is a transgender South African poet. Their work often concerns social justice, often concerns fantasy and science fiction, and sometimes a bit of both