Wine-Soaked War Cry

December 29, 2010
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If you're thirsty
For crimson and steel
To replace the chalice
Of that weaker crimson mead in your hand,
Take heed!
Chug your mug of bravery,
You soldier of the street.
Soon you'll realize, while bullets fly
It is something else that stirs your feet,
Something else that flames your heart,
Resurrecting phantom fears.
You know well, ragged centurion,
That you've been dying to fight for years.
You've died and been dying to hate the hate.
Your soul has been screaming
For centuries,
Behind pillars,
And under dynasties,
In basements and huts,
On ships and chopping blocks
Through lead rain and in the ditches of the world.
And now the bubbling fuel
Has faded,
But the burning has not.
The tongues of its flames,
Like the mouths of mad dogs,
Bite at the heels of History,
And silently stalk its palaces and slums.
With guns and guillotines and baseball bats,
Bandanas and tricorns and straw hats,
You fight for freedom and turf and bread,
While visions of beating drums dance in your head.
You are constantly extinguished
And reincarnated.
And you fight.
Through hundreds of hells and hamlets,
Where a scream becomes apotheosis.

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