All Their Voices

Words and thoughts in devotion to the Divine


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Revolutionary

Some gods just want to watch the world burn.

Sometimes I do.

And sometimes you handle that quite nicely

on your own.

A friend once said:

“Lord, what fools these mortals be!”

You aren’t all fools, though.

Some of you understand what is important.

Some of you know what’s worth fighting for.

(Not the things that most of you think are worth

fighting for, though.)

I plot and I scheme, but do not call me oathbreaker:

I leave that for the likes of the one-handed one

and my dear blood brother.

I work to wreck:

I bring down the old,

the entrenched,

the corrupt,

the status quo–

those that would sit surrounded

by ill-earned gold

and stolen power

while others starve;

who feast and run roughshod

over those of humbler means and miens–

as if they deserve their bloody spoils

and lofty towers.

Do my words sting, cut, bruise,

bleed, burn, break?

Good.

Speak truth to power!

You humans love that one, and

so many other well-worn slogans, like:

“Comfort the afflicted; afflict the comfortable.”

Do you think it is my job merely

to caper and prance for your amusement,

to wear a red suit and play the devil

for that other faith you never quite outgrew?

To make a mock of the bawdy and the bloated and the blatant,

the caricatures of other gods–

just not the ones you like?

If so, you never understood me at all:

you can call me outcast,

that much is true enough,

but dare not think I am the only one.

Hundreds flock to take shelter under my banner,

the lost and forlorn,

those whose love or form

do not fit what you think is ‘right’,

the poor, the sick,

the mad, the maimed, the mocked,

all the children you have cursed

with your spite and your greed and your disgust–

they are mine now.

My family, to take the place of the ones you murdered,

and my army.

They—and I—will not sit down and shut up.

We will not be silent.

We will SCREAM!

We will be heard.

And we will win.


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Daïs Hetaerus

They call you ‘Friend of Man’,

and though you are not human,

have never been human,

Still you understand us poor mortals

better than the others of your family.

Though you of Mount Olympus

are called the Deathless Ones

still you understand our fear of death

and you are kind to us–

save in cases of human evil

where kindness is not called for–

when you come to escort us away,

after our last breathing moment,

to our destination beyond

the gates of Ivory and Horn

to Hades’ domain.

You alone of all the Olympians

understand humor,

as your first utterances show

–to brother Apollo,

when he confronted you for stealing his cattle–

and you know well how important a laugh can be

to help lighten our heavy loads.

You understand the need for theft

when hunger and privation and poverty

threaten to tear body from soul

and we would sell the very flesh off our bones

for a mouthful of bread–

if not for us, then for our children.

Not for nothing are you called ‘God of Thieves’,

and perhaps for you, theft is more about

the joy of the challenge

than any hunger-driven need,

but still, you show your favor

to those who pray to you

in those moments of extreme desperation.

You taught me the value of persistence,

even through pain;

You taught me to keep going,

even when all hope is gone.

You taught me the reasons

a closed mind can be a death sentence.

And you taught me the only appropriate response

for certain kinds of stupidity is laughter.

The miasma of human things

does not touch your incorruptible self,

but above all others, I think,

you understand us woebegone

and ridiculous human beings,

and for that, I will always

be grateful for the time spent in your company,

always pour out libations to you,

just as two friends might get together for tea,

thank you for your aid,

tell you how things have been,

wonder the same of you,

and always

            always

            always

call you Friend.

For Hermes.