In the darkness, a child walked
feet bare, shivering, down a quiet street
Holding up matches, with pleading words
To adults who ignored her, walking passed.
The church bells began to ring above
and the little girl curled up on the steps
Of a house, burning bright with laughter and love
of a family bringing in the new year.
The girls eyes closed, her breath misting up
and gently snow began to fall.
But still, ignored by wandering souls
the girl knew she was near the end.
Hands blue, hands shaking,
she lit up a match, to keep the cold at bay
But the matches broke and flames stuttered out
Until she was left with none.
But a cloak wrapped around her shoulders
and with force, she opened her eyes,
to see a man above, her smiling,
a small hourglass held in his hands.
“I think” The strange man said to her.
“its not your time to go.
For the new year is here,
and does that not mean a new start too?”
And with a smile and a finger on his lips
He turned the hourglass round.
With a knock on the door behind the girl
He smiled and was gone in the wind.
A rush of warmth as the door opened
and a gasp as the little girl was found.
Kind words as she was picked up
and gentle whispers as she was taken inside.
Never would she have to beg
for money, food and warmth
for when Death had knocked on the door for her
He had given her a chance she never had before.