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(copyright 2000, by Kathleen Pilchowski)

a fierce hill rose before them
groped by thunderheads
lit with meadows
unfriendly to nature
mocking the men

pale amber tea, cast in plum leaves
fragmented divination
no stalks or coins will save them
the water streams readily
setting steam to the fires.

what do they do?
now assaulting the human army, 
now trembling with the wet heat of destruction
was it Jove's thunder 
or man's, that fired the first salvo?

the face of god will not suffer
for all they see is his gleaming back
no tablet is needed
to see who is chosen today
and the laws that were not followed were kept.