This is a poem which opens Mortal Thought: Holderlin and Philosophy, which will be published by Bloomsbury on July 28, 2016.
It has been said by the poets, servants of the Highest:
Kronos, subduer of his sublime father Uranus,
Was exiled to the abyssal depths in the wake of
His double defeat at the hands of his wife and son.
Kronos castrated the god of the eternal Heavens, and
Aphrodite, goddess of Earthly Love, born of the phallus,
Rose naked from bloody foam upon the surface of the sea.
With the usurpation, haunted by ominous prophesy of his
Overthrow by his child, Kronos began to consume
Each of his children just after their births.
His first defeat came from the wrath of his
Wife Rhea, in revenge for his ingestion of
Her children, as he sought to flee his Fate.
Rhea saved her youngest child, Zeus, by
Deception, giving Kronos, after the birth,
A stone, wrapped in swaddling clothes.
After his upbringing by nymphs and goddesses,
Zeus returned with their arts, and giving Kronos
A poison, made him vomit up his immortal children.
Liberated, his brothers and sisters ascended to
Olympus, whereupon Zeus cast his defeated
Father into the abysmal depths of Tartarus.
The second defeat of Kronos occurred when he and his fellow
Titans rose in insurrection and war against the Olympians, their attempt
Narrowly suppressed, the Titans again consigned to the nebulous abyss.
Kronos endured his time, witnessing the centuries of fidelity
To his immortal children until their worship was silenced by
Agitators of a narrative of salvation, of God made flesh.
Mouths spread the story of Eternity descending into time,
Of a heroic god conquering Time and Death, with
Promises of salvation for the mortals of the Word.
The ancient stories of the gods were cast into oblivion,
Along with their wisdom, for one thousand years by the
Poets of the god-man, proclaiming him to be the final truth.
Yet, with their proclamation, Truth, herself, awakens, contesting
The hubris of the new claim as just another fleeting illusion of time,
As with all stories of mortals, children of Prometheus, the Titan.
The goddess of truth set them each upon the other,
In the agon, the One God, who commanded
There shall be no other gods, descended into Chaos.
The stories of the God proliferated in strife, as a hydra,
The new religion shattered amidst the inexorable flux
Of the Nameless, the god made flesh, captive of time.
Seizing the moment of his liberation, in his ecstasy,
Kronos again castrates Eternity, repeating his first
Godlike act, giving to mortals their allotment of memory.
A goddess again ascends from bloody foam, Historia,
The youngest daughter of Kronos, who inhabits the
Vortex of love and strife, a still monstrous site.
Agitators of denial still fight to the death over that
Which must forever remain incomprehensible, destroying
What is Holy in the name of a religiosity of hubris.
Religions of power, unholy politics of the soul, the
Poets of immortal illusions still seek to poison
Time and Earth, the Kronian revolution still on its way.
Yet, there are other poets, however, who are still here,
Amid the strife of mortal existence, who maintain
The remembrance of the Holy, and of the gods.
Traces remain of that which is nearest, and in intimacy
Seek to incite the urgency and intensity of a feeling
That awakens the ecstatic openness of the possible.