"Lidylle," William-Adolphe Bouguereau, 1850, WikiArt.
“Lidylle,” William-Adolphe Bouguereau, 1850, WikiArt.

In early morning hours, quiet moments
Before sunrise, time to reflect and to
Pray, offerings made to household gods,
Smoldering flower petals. As they are
Given to flame, I see us, twined threads,
Given all to marriage, family, and to this
Land we defended by flesh-cleaving sword
And earth-turning plow, olive groves, grape
Vines, wind-waving wheat fields.

Yet as seasons and decades passed, flesh
And bone consumed by agéd disease, I
Realized, like you my love, I, too, would
Become one with this land, not from blood-
Stained battlefields, but from love’s hard
Labours, providing futures strong-bright
For our children, who grew to adults not
Knowing you. O! Brief melodies of love,
Families raised in warring absentia.

To earth mother, I release myself, bones
Bosom interred, beyond arrow’s reach,
Bramble’s weary tear, how we loved the
Gods, and how they honoured us, glorious
Moments beneath sun and stars, your
Presence felt, ethereal armor protecting,
Time-patient eyes adoring, I come now
Over celestial plains, my prayer, another
Life, our blesséd family free of war.

Lifetime in retrospect, marriage, widow raising children,
tending farmlands, ravages of war, faith in gods, prayer
for another lifetime in peace. 

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