Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots?
then may ye also do good, that are accustomed to do evil.
We’re tired of your feline past
predatory darkness cannot last
your claw and tooth, your fangs, your youth –
they get old fast.
Your sullen, incoherent style
has grown intolerably vile.
After the kill, your prey is still
in pure denial.
Leopard-phantasms feed the flames;
the thing that spawned you whines and blames
although we could call Motherhood
by harsher names.
Jungle law enforcement should
stop crowning you with victimhood
erase your spots, connect the dots –
we wish you would.
Then lambs with lions shall rejoice
while lines with iambs raise their voice;
spotted pards play wiser cards.
(A better choice.)
The kings of Tarshish and of the isles shall bring presents:
the kings of Sheba and Seba shall offer gifts.
Yea, all kings shall fall down before him: all nations shall serve him.
For he shall deliver the needy when he crieth;
the poor also, and him that hath no helper.
He shall spare the poor and needy, and shall save the souls of the needy.
He shall redeem their soul from deceit and violence:
and precious shall their blood be in his sight.
And he shall live, and to him shall be given of the gold of Sheba:
prayer also shall be made for him continually; and daily shall he be praised.
Psalm 72 [KJV]
Archaeologists strike gold in quest to find Queen of Sheba’s wealth
An initial clue lay in a 20 ft stone stele (or slab) carved with a sun and crescent moon, the “calling card of the land of Sheba”, Schofield said. “I crawled beneath the stone – wary of a 9 ft cobra I was warned lives here – and came face to face with an inscription in Sabaean, the language that the Queen of Sheba would have spoken.” […]
Sheba was a powerful incense-trading kingdom that prospered through trade with Jerusalem and the Roman empire. The queen is immortalised in Qur’an and the Bible, which describes her visit to Solomon “with a very great retinue, with camels bearing spices, and very much gold and precious stones … Then she gave the king 120 talents of gold, and a very great quantity of spices.”
Although little is known about her, the queen’s image inspired medieval Christian mystical works in which she embodied divine wisdom, as well as Turkish and Persian paintings, Handel’s oratorio Solomon, and Hollywood films. Her story is still told across Africa and Arabia, and the Ethiopian tales are immortalised in the holy book the Kebra Nagast.
Sean Kingsley, archaeologist and author of God’s Gold, said: “The idea that the ruins of Sheba’s empire will once more bring life to the villages around Maikado is truly poetic and appropriate. Making the past relevant to the present is exactly what archaeologists should be doing. “
“This business of a poet,” said Imlac, “is to examine, not the individual, but the species; to remark general properties and large appearances. He does not number the streaks of the tulip, or describe the different shades of the verdure of the forest. He is to exhibit in his portraits of nature such prominent and striking features as recall the original to every mind, and must neglect the minuter discriminations, which one may have remarked and another have neglected, for those characteristics which are alike obvious to vigilance and carelessness.
“But the knowledge of nature is only half the task of a poet; he must be acquainted likewise with all the modes of life. His character requires that he estimate the happiness and misery of every condition, observe the power of all the passions in all their combinations, and trace the changes of the human mind, as they are modified by various institutions and accidental influences of climate or custom, from the sprightliness of infancy to the despondence of decrepitude. He must divest himself of the prejudices of his age and country; he must consider right and wrong in their abstracted and invariable state; he must disregard present laws and opinions, and rise to general and transcendental truths, which will always be the same. He must, therefore, content himself with the slow progress of his name, contemn the praise of his own time, and commit his claims to the justice of posterity. He must write as the interpreter of nature and the legislator of mankind, and consider himself as presiding over the thoughts and manners of future generations, as a being superior to time and place.
Dig Sam Johnson’s screed HERE
“Wherever I went I found that poetry was considered as the highest learning, and regarded with a veneration somewhat approaching to that which man would pay to angelic nature. And yet it fills me with wonder that in almost all countries the most ancient poets are considered as the best; whether it be that every other kind of knowledge is an acquisition greatly attained, and poetry is a gift conferred at once; or that the first poetry of every nation surprised them as a novelty, and retained the credit by consent which it received by accident at first; or whether, as the province of poetry is to describe nature and passion, which are always the same, the first writers took possession of the most striking objects for description and the most probable occurrences for fiction, and left nothing to those that followed them but transcription of the same events and new combinations of the same images. Whatever be the reason, it is commonly observed that the early writers are in possession of nature, and their followers of art; that the first excel in strength and invention, and the latter in elegance and refinement.
“I was desirous to add my name to this illustrious fraternity. I read all the poets of Persia and Arabia, and was able to repeat by memory the volumes that are suspended in the mosque of Mecca. But I soon found that no man was ever great by imitations. My desire of excellence impelled me to transfer my attention to nature and to life. Nature was to be my subject, and men to be my auditors. I could never describe what I had not seen. I could not hope to move those with delight or terror whose interests and opinions I did not understand.
“Being now resolved to be a poet, I saw everything with a new purpose; my sphere of attention was suddenly magnified; no kind of knowledge was to be overlooked. I ranged mountains and deserts for images and resemblances, and pictured upon my mind every tree of the forest and flower of the valley. I observed with equal care the crags of the rock and the pinnacles of the palace. Sometimes I wandered along the mazes of the rivulet, and sometimes watched the changes of the summer clouds. To a poet nothing can be useless.
from: Rasselas by Samuel Johnson, 1759