1. "Amazons, Ride!"

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Centering Penthesileia,
Queen of the Amazons:

     "Ride, Thunder, ride!"

I kick my heels
into the horse's side
     just two strides now,
          ahead of the Erinyes,

     the Goddesses of Blood-Vengeance.

          Their rancid breath,
       their reaching claws
     their hissing,
   are closer now
than they've ever been.

Behind the monsters,
     the other women lag.
I urge them to speed as well.

     "Ride, Amazon companions, ride!"

     And then comes
          swift-footed Clonie,
       flame-haired Polemousa,
            and battle-scarred Derinoë.

And then comes
   far-throwing Evandre,
     clever Antandre,
  and nurturing Hippothoë.

     And then comes
             dark-eyed Harmothoë,
        good-hearted Alcibie,
          and horse-taming Antibrote.

And then comes
  huntress Derimacheia,
       cunning Thermodosa,
   and glorious Bremousa,
     completing the constellation of stars
        behind the shroud of monsters
  in the wide Scythian sky.

     "From the steppes of Chadesia
          to the coastland of Troy,
               we ride!

From the swamps of Lycastia
     to the walls of Ilion,
          we ride!

     From the spires of Themiscyra
          to the citadel of King Priam,
             we ride,
                  we ride,
               we ride!"

"To Hades's halls and back!"
     Bremousa calls,
          and the others cheer.

          My Amazons hunger for battle.

     My Amazons thirst for blood.

But they can't fight the daimons
     that nip
        and scratch
   and bite
     at the flanks of my loyal steed.

     Strong-armed warriors they all might be,
          but none can fight what none can see.


* The Kypria
* The Iliad
* The Posthomerica
* Tales of Nostos
* The Odyssey
* The Telegony
* The Aeneid
  Rage is the first book of the Iliad. Amazons is the first book of the Posthomerica.

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