This node in response to a Nodeshell Challenge (sort of) from baffo
Ha! En garde, m'sieu opponent d'entropy! Have at thee!
I was struck tonight by the appearance in the catbox of this my mirror self. The Custodian, whose sworn and upheld charge is to defeat the forces of entropy on a daily basis; to push back the boundaries of the heat death, and retain what order he can. Even if, as per Thermodynamics, this means simply trading entropy in his assigned beat for a lesser amount of order elsewhere, this is his job.
The dustbunnies of the continuum accumulate, otherwise, until they reach the approximate size and temperament of The Langoliers, and the world he's sworn to protect begins to fade away. Listless, then, it waits for the buzzing slap of chaos to overcome it; in the face of such impending doom, there's no reason to sparkle shine or glitter.
The Custodian's Charge
Against such fates the dutiful custodians of the world stand, tools in hand.
Some with brooms and pans, others with their naked hands;
a bold rare few with nowt but sword
-and some small fraction with just God's word-
some choose not to believe,
but some instead don holy greaves
and there is the one thing that all of them binds:
in this cold place, together, they hold the line.
A line that passes for a wall,
between the lighttime and the fall;
the line that wards onrushing night,
and the hell and disorder of its fright.
This poor small frontier of earth they man
Each charged with the defense of his arm's span.
More of the enemy there will always be;
and more of darkness will they see.
Thermodynamics decrees it so,
But out again tonight they'll go -
for the lack of sight of a struggle's end
is no reason for one of us to bend
and break; time will do that to us all
But if we hold on till then, then though we fall
in ones and twos, the others close
to hold the line until new soldiers choose
to take up the sword, or pen, or mop and broom
and confront the chaos that lurks in gloom.
-The Custodian, tonight and tomorrow
You see, there is in fact hope; if the Chaotician is a practitioner of arts that allow the Chaos to be worked and held and modified, and (ones hopes) to be moved aside, well then, there is no foe! No combat to be had, nor blow to be struck between comrades' arms, and together will we hold off darkness' charms.