The Pharaoh’s Night Light
In the heart of the boy king’s tomb
and in the hearts of intruders
is a light burning 3000 years.
Only grave robbers or men
of science dare touch this mystery.
Others warn not to shine a light
in the cursed eyes of the dead, to fear
how power and wealth turn green,
an inheritance of poison wells.
Tutankhamen hugs the scepter to his heart.
The mask grips a sickly face. Frail arms
could never lift the golden sword to battle.
Men of muscle load his pieces on their backs
and carry him up to desert moonlight.
Treasure hunters below tear through the past
where a shaft of starlight winks on jewels,
where soon dawn spreads the fire of gold rush
cursed by priests and history, flames dancing,
then melting like fool’s gold
in the green eyes of the damned.
Robert S. King, a Georgia native, now lives in the mountains near Hayesville, NC. His poems have appeared in hundreds of magazines, including California Quarterly, Chariton Review, Kenyon Review, Main Street Rag, Midwest Quarterly, and Southern Poetry Review. He has published three chapbooks (When Stars Fall Down as Snow, Garland Press 1976; Dream of the Electric Eel, Wolfsong Publications 1982; and The Traveller’s Tale, Whistle Press 1998). His full-length collections are The Hunted River and The Gravedigger’s Roots, both in their second editions from FutureCycle Press, 2012; and One Man's Profit (Sweatshoppe Publications, 2013). His work has received several nominations for the Pushcart Prize and Best of Net award. Robert's personal website is www.robertsking.com.