Printed from WriteWords -

Endgame - revised.

by  James Graham

Posted: Saturday, June 7, 2014
Word Count: 161
Summary: The word 'pawn' is out. This way, readers will be puzzled at first but (I hope) find that the ending is the solution.


Dan is known by his blond hair and gravitas,
Jack by his mickey-taking and falsetto laugh.
Harry was a hundred metres champion,
Steve plays ukulele and banjo.

Barry misses his two Weimaraners,
Charlie smokes and coughs and doesn’t care.
Andrew’s girl friend threw him out,
Richard lost his brother in a crash.

They have a plan. They got a message 
to the other side, and all agreed
to synchronise. The element of surprise is total:

as if one day the sea turned gold, the sun went down
at noon, and parrots talked philosophy. Their Majesties
will be affrighted, and their knights nonplussed.

Today’s the day, and now’s the hour. They have
advanced, but none has fallen. The silent signal passes
along both ranks. They turn about, and claim

the Queen’s compass and the Rook’s freedom,
the Knight’s tricks and the Bishop’s power to smite

and sweep and swerve and charge and cheer
and put the Kings and courtiers to flight.