I'd call this place hell
if it didn't sound so final.
I prefer: The Underworld:
awe clapping its great wings about our heads.
My daughter read the hero's name without ever
having heard it said:
Useless, she informed us, blinded the Cyclops.
Useless: that's a name he might have liked,
next to Nobody, next to Walk-through-the-fires-of-the-dead.
First things first, he learned, usefully.
Back to the living,
the false world, the changing one
where customs differ,
but where everyone wants certainty to last.
So, much later, a poet wrote of an infant god
whirling in flames:
Poor Robert Southwell, first strung up,
next gutted, then beheaded.
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