The Warrior

by C. S. MacCath

I am the warrior on top of the mountain --
White-breasted queen of ravens,
Red-handed mistress of hounds.
I know the name of my weapon.

The bones of my enemies rest under my boot --
Ivory shards crunching in the mud,
Useless now for anything but decoration.
I wear the teeth that sank into my flesh.

I am the night mare assuaged by screaming --
Long limbed slitter of throats,
Bright-maned collector of scalps.
My breastplate is oiled in entrails.

The hearths of my enemies are covered in ice --
Sooty depths waiting for an ember,
Useless now for anything but interment.
I took the fire that was taken from me.

C. S. MacCath holds an Honours B.A. in Celtic Studies from the University of Toronto and a M.A. in English from the University of Maine. Her work has been published in Mythic Delirium, Illumen, PanGaia and newWitch, among others. She is a student of the djembe and the bodhran at present but hopes to learn more varieties of ethnic drumming in time.

When asked to name her favourite fruit, she replied: "Sadly, my favorite fruits can no longer be picked or eaten. They were the raspberries that grew wild on our property in Maine during the summer of 2002. They were big as nickels and made the sweetest jam I've ever tasted. We gathered eleven gallon buckets full that year!"

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