Smintheus

God of the silver bow,
furious god of plagues,
mouse god, rat god, god
of dust and pyres
and swollen tongues.
How terrible, your flowing hair.

We who danced in joy
at your lyre’s tune
and reveled in your
glorious youth, have lived
to see you storming
at heart, your golden brow

dark as rain, your healing
hands red with dire disease.
Our prophet howls
with wolf voice, offerings
burn in reeking smoke of mercy
curdling to a miasma of revenge.

[Steve Klepetar’s work has received several nominations for the Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net. Flutter Press has recently published two chapbooks: My Father Teaches Me a Magic Word and My Father Had Another Eye.]

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