Xenophon’s Story

October 02, 2020

Socrates, the keeper of the keys till Christ came

Taught important audacious Greeks, whose beaks, St Paul well twanged

Foolhardy wise in eyes dowsed by their tangled word-conceptions

With a beguiled and styled high pride all Gospel thrust aside; put truth beneath them

A fiction in their sight: t’was sealed congealed by lies of haughty lusciousness;

Forgetting Socrates.

Whose choice was not the Cana-water wine

But no virtue humility had moved him; held in high and just esteem

His self and others’ – in a polished mirror of discretion

This fellow whom The Oracle’s repute proclaimed

Across the world, called wisest man alive

Disputed Delphi not for shame, but unbeguiled incredulous,

Goes gathering evidence peripatetic round the town

Arguing fair that impudence this diadem had handed

Him; leaden bayes; consults the traders, statesmen, politicians,

‘The nous’ who mouthe and crowd to understand

More than they do, and play always an overreaching game

Assuming keen precisions, by an impotence of thought

Talked pertinent-appropriate, and a payload’s promise short:

This Quasimodo Socrates acceded to this load

Placed on his shoulders Delphic-made in witness

So gracefully exceedingly, conceded he in deed

This guerdon thrust a beast unsought for,

A man unwelcoming of gifts, becomingly, no prizes

The man of constancy to death took up the postulate

He knew he knew no knowledge; whereas comfortably,

With self-illusion diva persons regally disputed

In knowing tones; on bones triumphantly well-cast,

And took repast on a clutch of explanations for the least canard

Their candidacies unfitting but to sweep the yard.

This noble man, no wealth, and owning nothing; sought after

By rich and prominent positions in a lofty City State

With adulation, supplication, to his gracious virtues

A citizen of citizens; a living civic statute

He clear foresaw, forsworn, his package doom of death

The consonance of Athens turn against him, run awry

Melitus, his accuser, led by grievance, vilifies:

Adorer of false gods; Athenian youth defiled”

Corrupted accusations; jealous envies wanting laid;

Essentially his preference in that favour owned by God

Wrang rankling bowels where darkness ever turns the gimlet

An accolade to character and probity the speech

Mild, measured. altogether reasonable, past justness

This Socrates stood cajoling for their sakes; renegades;

No penitent abasement this apology

Chastisement lenient, some with pity,some deriding,

A light surfactant irony within that urbane manner

A line as straight as noonday manures constancy throughout

Enough to save a saint, but condemns sanctity

Implored his weird himself to spell, this Socrates demurs

Makes modest light proposal due reward to be his meed

Which raucous ires reject; it’s wraithlight to his pending doom

And led away to prison, hero in a little room

Whose walls call out for clemency; his friends stood round agree;

Ratchet a planned escape; escape non-gratia to he

Whose Genius tells him this day is the day to die

Serve nature nature’s debt, and hale, composed, the dose imbibe,

In leaving of the world alike a generousness

Enlarged to gratitude bespoke him a commanding soul.

Abide by Athens, to God’s will be conformed

And go; to know at last reason’s assured fulfilment

With eloquent command Socratic testament maintains

Those black accusers’ falsehoods could not be sustained

After the fact of execution, and Athens’ ‘Gadfly’ flown

A shamed chameleon Demos raked with guilt recants them, then

By way of seeking absolution, calumniate the rout;

Lamenting those inventions perjured; hindsight bids contrite

A city which confessed detested prosection, tried

To a martyr’s ending wisdom on a cup of hemlock

The very cisterns bearing freshets on the city streets

Were ordered unavailable to culpable Melitus

His company attainted; slighted, ruled by ruth, unclean

Commodities they touched - all left was thrown away

A formal persecution, state commended, cursed these men;

Pursued and dogged them strong to death; they hanged themselves

Oracular foreshadowings points one zion-wards who reads

These signs in God’s designs, indelible through history