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The Ancient Warrior ©

Paul Murdoch
Alexandria, Scotland
2004

Lie still, ye bracken-covered giants, that sleep below the soil,
You patient, silent warriors, carved out from ancient stone.
Ignore the prickles on your hide and wait beneath the stars.
Till days grow long and man subsides.
The parasites that scratch and dig and burrow in your skin
Will soon fall off and perish in the fires of dying suns.
'Tis then you'll shed your mantle and crack the hallowed rock,
Released at last to fight and die.
Remember in that instant; in death's unfair embrace,
How you once fought and won.
How you laid the foundations of creation then lay still for eternity.
Remember, as you turn to dust and ride on solar winds,
That you will gather one more time and fight another day.
A billion trillion miles from here, you'll rise and live again
And as you cool and turn to stone beneath some distant sun
Lie still and rest another age beneath a different skin.
Let creatures walk and scramble.
They'll scratch and dig and bore,
Lie still my ancient warrior,
And take your rest once more.


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