The Fate of Sword-Hunters

You could not be contained in any maze.
You only had to raise your hard right hand
And lay it flat upon the dungeon wall
To trace a path, inexorable as Fate.
That distant giantess may cut the thread;
You fed the present goblins to your sword.

They sung, in taverns, of a magic sword
Long lost, within a grim enchanted maze.
Rumours of rumours, but you traced the thread
To take a map from cold and wrinkled hand:
A cloakèd man, who met a grisly fate
Waiting for heroes, by a tavern wall.

The maze was locked behind a thorny wall
That grew as swiftly as your cutting sword
Could clear a path. Some secret rule of fate
You sought, in text as cryptic as a maze;
Found nothing in the books you had to hand
But swore that you would pull this hanging thread.

Reading your letters, I took up the thread.
Your years of long research had hit a wall:
You told me, in a fraying, fragile hand
The wizard who had sealed away the sword
Had kept a hidden entrance to the maze,
But wrote no notes. And no-one knew her fate.

The clue could only come from fickle fate:
A sheet of paper with a crimson thread.
I found it, printed with a child’s maze
In some small shop beneath the city wall.
The shopkeeper confessed, at point of sword
It was his mother’s, from her mother’s hand.

So now I summon, by my bleeding hand
Your soul and body from the grip of fate.
Not life, but quite enough to bear a sword:
A body bound to serve by silver thread.
I’ll send through the wizard’s hidden wall
To bring me back the sword that’s in the maze.

I guide you in, with hand on magic thread.
Fate cuts and catches it on every wall.
Your sword finds me untangling it in the maze.

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