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Celtic Warrior

If I'm slain, if I'm not to be 
on earth or in your arms anymore, 
if the light is never to be in my eyes 
or the darkness on my hips . . . 
then I shall come gently 
to this new way to absorb 
all your winters into the fires 
of my soul. 

Where will I end? 
Where is there a final place 
for me to bury my mind? 
Perhaps there are no arms 
loving enough to embrace 
the sadness of my thoughts. 

But then . . . if I am not slain at all, 
if I come through only bloodied 
but sane, then I shall come to you 
as a brute, not a girl;  I shall take you 
roughly and we shall both 
continue and continue 
the great noise of us 
as we herald our lives.

The Roman historian, Ammeanus Marcellinus, wrote that Celtic women followed their men into battle, taking an energetic part in the melee. An axiom of the times was a Celtic man and his wife could hold off an entire troop of Roman soldiers. It was not recorded however if women went naked into battle as the men did. In the Celtic world, women possessed equal rights with men, and could inherit land and wealth. Women could be elected to any office and also be admitted to war councils.

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