Twilight parade

The kingdom has diminished 
of late
- contracted through over-familiarity,
and the king has lost the nerve 
he once had
in the spring,
when his territory was unmapped,
roads unlaid.

Yet still he clings on - 
high shoulders stiff with entitlement,
marching the perimeter, 
and staring over ramparts to check 
if the horizon is advancing.

At twilight he parades his troops ...
they are outwardly subservient
but party in the stores at night.