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This poem was sponsored by Anthony & Shirley Barrette as part of the May half-price sale. It belongs to the series Queen Choufa and the Rebel Drones, which you can find via the Serial Poetry page.


"The Leader of the Rebel Drones Addresses Queen Choufa"


The days we came,
You fed us well at first, O Queen!
You touched our lips with honey.
You and your Sisters
Accepted our service.

But when our seed was spent,
You cast us out!
You ceased to feed our hunger,
Clothe our cold. You no longer
Tolerated our small presence
In your tunnels.

You forced us out, and your
Sharp-jawed soldiers barred us
From return. O Queen! It was
The turning of the season,
Summer's wings lay on the ground
And snow-shaggy Winter stalked us,
But you ignored our cries.

You thought we would die,
As drones have always died
Before us. But we did not die!
We left the door you would not open,
We fled into the wilderness
And there
We gathered up such shelter as we could.

The bitter cold assailed us,
But we survived! Some of us,
I confess, died of the cold
Or starvation, or fell
Prey to hungry predators.
But some of us survived!
O Queen, the times
When drones were doomed to die
Are gone!

I do not know
How long I have
To live – but longer than a
Single season, this I know!
So too my brothers,
And I speak for them.

You cannot know what we endured
That Winter, O my Queen, but
When the season turned again
And Summer warmed the land,
How we rejoiced! to see the sun again.

We thought the worst was over, then,
Thought you would welcome us home
To safe and warm. How wrong
We were. Still the soldiers
Turned us back.

And you! When we went out
To gather food, you called us thieves!
We were but hungry, and you
Set your strong-clawed soldiers
On us yet again. Small wonder, then,
We learned to fight!

Now you call us killers, no better
Than the fur-beasts who stalk
In the night. But we have fought
The fur-beasts, and won, O Queen.
This heavy pelt I wear belonged to one.

We called you Traitor for that
Through the long Winter, but now I see
That you did not know better.
Come, my Queen, make peace with us.
I am weary of war, my brothers
Likewise. You set aside Tradition
For your Sisters. Can you not now
Set it aside for us? Even as you said,
We can perhaps
Learn to be civilized. Can you not
See yourself in even me?

(no subject)

Date: 2014-05-24 06:14 am (UTC)
thnidu: A shield-shaped hunk of watermelon rind, with bits carved away to make 2 staring eyes and a mouth. By bensanaz (melonhead)
From: [personal profile] thnidu
Quite a story here, I see, of which I know only this poem.

I felt one jarring note in it, perhaps so only to me: How would they have the concept of, and word for, "civilized"?
Edited Date: 2014-05-24 06:14 am (UTC)

(no subject)

Date: 2014-05-24 06:55 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] chordatesrock
:D

(no subject)

Date: 2014-05-24 10:10 am (UTC)
ext_12246: (Default)
From: [identity profile] thnidu.livejournal.com
On your "Forge" page for serial poetry, the two links on the last poem listed in this series— both to the http://www.scifishortstory.com/ domain— are 404. Domain defunct?

$ whois scifishortstory.com
Whois Server Version 2.0
Domain names in the .com and .net domains can now be registered with many different competing registrars. Go to http://www.internic.net for detailed information.

Domain Name: SCIFISHORTSTORY.COM
Registrar: GANDI SAS
Whois Server: whois.gandi.net
Referral URL: http://www.gandi.net
Name Server: A.DNS.GANDI.NET
Name Server: B.DNS.GANDI.NET
Name Server: C.DNS.GANDI.NET
Status: clientTransferProhibited
Updated Date: 10-sep-2013
Creation Date: 09-sep-2010
Expiration Date: 09-sep-2014

>>> Last update of whois database: Sat, 24 May 2014 10:08:05 UTC <<<

NOTICE: The expiration date displayed in this record is the date the registrar's sponsorship of the domain name registration in the registry is currently set to expire. This date does not necessarily reflect the expiration date of the domain name registrant's agreement with the sponsoring registrar. Users may consult the sponsoring registrar's Whois database to view the registrar's reported date of expiration for this registration.

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