Robert Moss’ poem “Sun Stealer”

They say you stole the sun.
This is inexact.
You hid the light in darkness
where the light-killers could not find it
so the sun could shine brighter than before.

They say you are black
because you are evil and unkind.
They do not say you swallowed
your own shadow and mastered it
at the price of wearing its colors.

Shivering, they call you death-knell,
Death-eater, bad omen, flying banshee
because you feed on death that feeds on men.
You strip what rots from what remains.
You give us the purity of the bones.

Trickster, they call you.
Oh yes, you’ll do your wickedest
to ensure our way is never routine
and we are forced to improvise and transform.
You won’t let us swap our souls for a plan.

At least they don’t accuse you of minor crimes.
I praise and claim your gifts
of putting on darkness to come and go safely
in the darkest places, jesting with Death.
Robert Moss‘ poem “Sun Stealer” on his blog “Dream Gates” in the blog post “Raven Eye” (beliefnet, September 21, 2010); written “‚Ķfor Raven at the end of a marvelous adventure in group dreaming, when many of us were able to see true with the help of that raven eye.” Earlier revision available as “RAVEN EYE: Sun Stealer” (The Robert Moss BLOG, January 2, 2009 1:58am); note earlier rendering of final line as “joking with Death.”

Robert Moss Posted on behalf of on Wednesday, September 22nd, 2010 under Quotations, Source Texts.


  1. The full name is Raven’s Eye: Sun Stealer. I think that is important because the poem is about the Raven. Omitting that line causes the subject to be lost. Just my thoughts. Thank you for posting.


  2. @Jamie – I thought about this quite a bit when I was posting the quotation, and I’m glad you have given me a chance to outline my reasoning. On the Dream Gates blog post, Robert Moss entitles the blog post “Raven Eye” but the poem is called “Sun Stealer”. The older blog post on Robert Moss’ personal website calls the poem “RAVEN EYE: Sun Stealer”. On both blog posts, he emphasizes the connection with Raven via juxtaposition with an image of a raven. I opted to go with the more contemporary naming since that’s the version of the poem I cite.

    To emphasize the connection with Raven, I thought to use an image of a raven (or your tipi door!) at first, but felt a strong desire to implicitly question Raven’s relation to Prometheus and other culture heroes known for bringing fire/knowledge to humanity. I decided this was OK when I noticed that the image I was drawn to was embedded in a document on the Theosophical Society’s website (worth reading in its own right) – and the Northwest Branch of the society uses a stylized raven by Haida/Metis artist Don Yeoman as its logo/totem.

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