One Chance

By Stan   

Don't take from me my leather tapestry.
My shield and canvas, both, lives in such flesh.
What you don't see is meant for me and mine.
Each workaday slog yields memories and cuts afresh.

Please, I beg you, don't covet knowledge of my truth
unless, that is, you are made strong enough to call me friend.
My secrets are not few, and they are shared for life.
My apple, bitten, renders useless all attempts to mend.

Fences, they say, make for privacy and peace.
And mine, as if you didn't know, come with no gate.
To enter here is to stay and listen long and hard.
Throw in your hat with wild abandon before it's too late.

My inferno is alight and meant for no weak heart.
To feel my heat is to risk the rawest burn.
This upholstery, charred but firm, shields only me.
To climb THIS tree could be a devil's deal. This, you will learn.

The view is striking, yes, but oh, the fall is harsh.
So, proceed cautiously if you must, and remember this:
Your words - they must ring true, lest you come full armed.
If you are my friend - welcome! Otherwise, shoot. And do NOT miss!

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