Upon this benighted precipice
We hang a scarlet thread
And bind it fast upon the head
Of those we know no more

For surety we take a pledge
Of gaudy stones cast low
Arrayed in ranks before the sow
That turned to rend them all

We scribe a word constructed
And burn it to our bones
While earning interest on the loan
That leaves us ragged fools

Bestride a river red with blood
I saw mothers pale with thirst
Laying daughters down at first
And sons in iron after

Till falling like a spear to earth
From heaven cast in rage
Remuneration unassuaged
By iron bar and stone repaid

Then once more I closed the sky
And swallowed sweeter things
In memory of bitter dreams
And burn my tongue in song

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