An Old Hoplite Weeps

Too often the night wakes
and Fear widens the eyes to emptiness;
and oft the jays screech their pride
to a silver morn that shelters futility.
The ever-repeating ripples of Fate
the exhausted self repeals.
From darkness to darkness
the labors increase,
the shame endures,
the sacrifice lingers.

Desire flees itself.

Creases of dusk, time’s tired wrinkles,
trap Athena’s nebulous travail.
Soon the wandering Shades shall greet me.
Soon my muscles, lax and tame,
shall rest unfettered,
and the sun shall creep forward
to no one.

Image of Hoplite Warrior

Blistered hand, malicious blade,
we march only to march,
and seek only the seeking,
for a plunder devoid of gain,
to conquer without Fame.

Let my scars sing my sacrifice:
my hacked shield my pillow now,
my greaves loosened, my legs lame,
-- yes sweet Morpheus...,
yes dark Nemesis--
I dream a blood-less field,
heavy with gilded grains,
untouched by heroes,
not named by men.


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