Vulgivagus

Introduction

He walks the earth a cast-out, searching.

In his wake a trail of pestilence

swarms from the depths of Patmos to Tarsus.

The blood of the young drips vilely from his fingertips,

mingling with the earth, poisoning it.

His shadow overtakes the sycamores,

casting back the righteous light.

A thick wool cloak covers his scarred face,

burned from the years in Tartarus,

hiding him within his own shadows.

His smile twists as he tastes,

the crimson trail still visible on his lips.

Memories fill his head:

Vietnam, the purges, the Crusades, the World Wars;

the abundance of death fuels and steadies him.

For many years he has wandered, enjoying.

Our own self-destruction has brought him

from the Sahara to the Mojave,

leaving behind no trace of his existence

but the smell of the forsaken dead.

The sand springs up in bitter protest,

beating against his sun-scorched face,

chiseling away flesh as he struggles on.

He raises his hands, crushing defiance,

overpowering the natural order.

As he walks the earth, the wind parts:

The wheat stalks bow to him,

Proclaiming him majesty of the macrocasm.

His hand grazes the stalks, caressing,

Scattering particles of grain into the cool air.

The wind calls out to him;

The change is coming, the land knows.

The breeze circulates from times long forgotten,

Bringing with it a reminder of Nebuchadnezzar.

"Mene, mene, tekel…." The wind calls.

Two millennia have passed; our days numbered:

Our reign is at an end.

Signs now present as the new messiah cometh.

Closing his eyes, he realizes this is his time.

The sky roars behind him in a crescendo.

In the distance a crown of thorns burns;

While a baby cries in his mother's arms.

A thin trail of blood crawls down its forehead,

While the crown still burns.

In an instant they are swept away by the whirlwind.

The wind gains voice, threatening,

Tossing him parallel to the earth.

He stands proud, pulls off his hood,

Shouts, "I won't go back."

He dusts off his cloak and continues on.

Arms outstretched, he observes,

looking out beyond us.

For years our awakening coerced;

feigning power, we succumb,

bumbling over our selfish greed.

The might and power of nations

fail to stop his arrival;

in their waning existence

there is much more left for him.

Old prophecies, now, would be realized.

His search continues uncontested;

The earth helpless to stop him.

With each step, darkness ensues,

spoiling the lot of mankind

with the shadows of lust, deceit, and greed.

With this, our blood stains the ground;

We fight each other, while he attends.

Places like: Pork Chop Hill, Saigon, and the Mogue

become our burial grounds,

for the dead see the end of war.

In the distance he sees her now,

his journeys have led him to her embrace,

she, his unwilling pawn, will be our ruin.

While the child begotten of her,

will rise uncontested and be forced upon the world.

Even now the council convenes,

while he keeps a torch lit for their arrival.

They've watched him thrive, passively,

from Olympus, they allowed his coming,

while the wretch'ed saw their world collapse.

In contrast to what they have permitted,

and they have also prepared;

sending forth a delegate to negotiate.

Each one turned back by Apollyon,

until there were three.

First entered Eloah, the mother

speaking for her children.

With the essence of the North Wind,

she beseeched the Son of the Morning

taking with her the soul of the earth.

"Do not hold his wrath against them,

they played no part in your estrangement.

What happened is years past,

don't hold them accountable for past transgressions."

He rebuked her.

The one called Eloh enters,

with him the last vestiges of shadow disappear.

They take up council together, while ages pass,

Each bartering for the future of the created.

A deal was struck.

Negotiated from the sand of the earth;

a son for a son, two-thousand years each,

each would get his chance.

They would then choose, one or the other;

and with this choice, our future.