The Long Victory
a poem on the long view of the gods
You thought in your arrogance that you had beaten us;
you thought that you had won.
A flood of words, lies as deadly as Balor’s eye,
gold leaf on vellum and the trickle of baptismal waters:
these were your weapons.
But no creation of Man can stem the roiling tides of magic:
hammer on anvil, flurry of black feathers,
the sweep of oars, the clang of swords coming together,
the bright-blazing spear, the sword that returns every wound,
the cauldron that feeds all who come to it, the stone that screams:
you have not destroyed us; we have only changed.
You invaded and you conquered. Even so, we never feared you.
But we saw the devastation your invasion
wrought in other lands, as you forced your bile
down the throats of those who dwelt there:
groves cut down, temples toppled, books burned,
priests and believers alike put to the sword.
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