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Muffled Drum by Caroline Gill

Silence, 

 

then the throb of pulse on stone:

stifled pangs vibrate through bars.

Pacing paws go round and round:

echoes come but no one stirs.

Jet and amber flying lizards

and their wings above the cell:

how they love their music-making,

stringing notes from wall to wall.

 
 

Midnight shadows chase the moon,

brand a stave with stripes of ink.

Muffled drum-beats sound in vain:

quavers pelt a dappled flank.

Stars retreat while ticking rhythms

rise from song sheets for the dawn.

Lizards fill their scales with freedom

while a tiger hunkers down.