The Cold Within
Six humans trapped by happenstance
In black and bitter coldó
Each one possessed a stick of wood,
Or so the story's told.
Their dying fire in need of logs,
The first, a woman, held hers back.
For on a face around the fire,
She noticed it was black.
The next, a man, looking 'cross the way,
Saw one not of his church,
So couldn't bring himself to offer
The fire his stick of birch.
The third, a man, sat in tattered clothes;
Gave his coat a hitch.
Why should his log be put to use
To warm the idle rich?
The rich man sat back and thought
Of the wealth he had in store.
And of how to keep what he'd earned
From the lazy poor.
The black man's face bespoke revenge
As the fire passed from his sight,
For in his stick of wood he saw
A chance to spite the white.
And the last member of this group
Did naught except for gain.
Giving only to those who gave
Was how he played the game.
The logs held tight in death's still hands
Were proof of human sin.
These didn't die from the cold without;
They died from the cold within.
Author unknown