A wayward breach of darkness from a stranger underground
Lit up the crystal cavern till its jagged walls were found.
The stranger raised his lantern to a crevasse lined with moss
Where molten ice ran out the wall and gathered into frost.
He took his pack all filled with tools for scientific search,
Found one, and then, careful, scraped some lichen from its perch.
He tucked away the sample, then with slow and silent feet
Began his journey of ascent, the waiting sky to meet.
He mused upon his lantern, how the shadows would give way
To humble even night himself by breaking of the day.
The darkness was a tyrant, the Diktat of a war,
Enforced within the Underworld since times of ancient lore,
Yet now he cowered helplessly, within a wayward crack,
And sent his subjects from their posts, an army falling back.
The stranger smiled, confident, and took a quicker gait,
For time had passed, his schedule tight, and he must not be late!
He sloshed his boots within a stream, he stomped them with a splash,
The sound, it spiraled down the cave and echoed with a CRASH!
It didn't fade, built up instead, began a distant rumble;
The stranger gaped in horror as the walls began to crumble.
The stones were loosed from high above; they pelted from the sky.
His lantern fell upon the bank, caught fire, and then died.
The stranger crouched in darkness with his hands above his head,
Trembling like the rippling stream, his stomach clenched with dread.
The tyrant was avenging for a mock of dignity,
Yet one by one the stones would miss; the darkness couldn't see!
When at last the shower stopped, the stranger stood upright
And felt beside him mountains formed within the depths of night.
And lo, behold, a wondrous slice of sunshine from afar
That shone upon the cavern like the single brightest star!
As the wise men long ago who followed, Christ to seek,
The stranger, though no longer strange, rose up from the creek.
He climbed to where a mountaintop had risen to the sun
And met the sky triumphantly; his struggle there was done,
But Dr. Robert Lee Brickade had battles yet to fight.
Perhaps this lichen holds a cure, he thought, expression tight.