the shadow knows

that shadow of despair
it lingers everywhere
in search of doubt
and those without
the hope of faith or prayer

i saw it yesterday
approaching to survey
the hallowed grounds
of those in gowns
whose rules we must obey

it stayed there quite a while
i even saw it smile
each time intent
and punishment
were hard to reconcile

it measured every fool
to every broken rule
as if to wait
on one whose fate
the gods would ridicule

but when the fools were gone
the shadow lingered on
as if some sin
remained within
it chose to wait upon

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