FRAGMENTS FROM ALEXANDRIA: Still, Within Your Gates

~Spoken by Hypatia of Alexandria

Once all
our doors were open.
Our great light shone, compelled.

In ten great halls with marble walls
we spoke of stars and numbers,
of water, stone, and thought.

They called me August Mistress,
The Living Grace of Speech,
but no Grace or speech sufficed.

The rabble dragged me through the streets,
butchered me in the church.
They burned my bones.

My shining city–
her light did not

suffice.

And still, within your gates, barbarians.
They shout among the rabble in the streets;
trample the rubble in your streets.
They shoot the rebels, crush the revels.

Great Pan is dead;
the Muses mourn.

And still:

in long white halls,
in forests green,
in scraps of mind,

we walk.  In

spaces

between  words
beneath
the piles of stones

we speak

between
the dying leaves.

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