CENSORS

They stole his words,
carefully sidling up to him
when he was distracted,
and plucking one left
hanging from a pocket
or in his room at night
slid one from the dresser.
He never saw them
and never suspected.
They toyed with him,
for a while taking
only verbs, leaving him
transfixed and cursing
his pen, for reasons
neither it nor he could fathom.
One morning, lost
in the first sun of spring,
they took nouns
and his world became
more vague and indefinite.
Now and again, in
moments of boldness
they would take
a phrase, or when
he was particularly vigilant,
merely a letter
that would not
often be missed.
His world grew darker
and his notebooks sat
patiently awaiting his return,
but he had less
and less to say
and covered the window
of his study with an old tarp.
He cried in increasing
silence until he
was caged within his skull,
left to stare at the vacant walls
seeing nothing.