John F. McCullagh

(09/28/1954 / Flushing)

Sacred Flame (A tale of the Neanderthals) l





The newcomers killed my woman,
Ransacked my cave and killed my child.
My brother and I had been out hunting,
The only reason we’re still alive.

We noticed first as we drew closer
The sacred fire had gone out.
We dropped our catch and sniffed the air-
When I smelled blood I grabbed my axe.

My spirit dropped, my heart was saddened
My woman and my child lay dead
The newcomers had speared the baby
A club caved in my woman’s head.

My brother took the child to bury
I built a rock cairn for my mate
I stroked her matted hair in sadness
I stoked the fire of my hate.

From outside I heard my brother
Bellowing his battle cry
Four newcomers were attacking
I grabbed my spear and let it fly.

My aim was true, my man was gutted
My brother crushed another’s skull.
The other two ran short on courage
They fled as we stood side by side.

We too must flee, the caves’ unsafe-
And they’ll be back in force besides
We looked back at the cave in sadness
As we bid our home good bye

The ashes in our cave are cooling
Throughout Europa its’ the same
So many of my people dying
Who will tend the sacred flame?

Submitted: Friday, February 26, 2010
Edited: Saturday, July 31, 2010

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