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Alexander fan videos and fan poetry

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Location: Las Vegas, Nevada - USA

PostPosted: Sat Feb 05, 2011 2:33 pm    Post subject: Alexander fan videos and fan poetry Reply with quote

This is cross-posted from the more active Colin Farrell Fansite...

I thought it would be good to have a thread for music videos on Alexander. I've started writing poetry about them in Greek meters.

The Greek meters didn't work in accentual-syllabic feet, but that’s what I did writing about this music video of Alexander. It’s less an experiment in mixed verse (the short stanzas are Sapphic stanzas) than an excuse to gush about Alexander. I am so inarticulate when it comes to this story!!! Everything is so big. I’ll be the first to admit the video is much better than the poem about it.

Promise of a Lifetime - Video of Alexander and Hephaistion by CCHJJ

Memoried Babylon welcomed us back from the Gulf, and our Eagle
spirited destiny’s whispered convictions ahead of our breaking
bodies as though the great city’s winged god welcomed Zeus and our army
home – you remember the day just as vividly as you remember
standing beside me before the immense Persian host, joined in courage,
under the wings of our constant companion, unwavering, inspired.

Finding you so weak and exhausted, warmth spent
fighting fevers India shook us with, eyes
dark, your weak assurances broken, kneeling, willing you my strength,

I recall to you the embrace you gave me
far from peace and home, in the shadows I made
damning friends I should have forgiven, patient, full of acceptance.

I remember promises made by moonlight,
when my every prayer was a secret we shared.
Myth and love affair were a single pledge made facing our twinned deaths.

I could hear you say that you’d never leave me,
joining me in quietness or in exile –
any destiny that I chose, your promise followed me onward.

Babylon filled us with wonder, estranged us from Greece and from Pella,
challenged our dreams to encompass a world as remote as the sky gods
worshipped by slaves to an empire we could reform. An enormous
mixing of races and languages, armies and markets and creatures
known to us only from myth – a new world in our hands – this exotic
landscape made sense to me only because in the palace, I had you.

You would help me lose myself on the frontier,
you who lifted me from my deepest anguish,
crowned me king amidst a chaotic tumult, pulling me forward,

for the glory we never doubted we would
win confronting challenges that transformed our
lives and minds. You guided me always, perfect faith in me lasting

from the brave beginning we faced with real fear
to the promised end, every prayer a passion we shared,
each rebirth a consequence only Homer’s words could divine, death

haunting hopes of evergreen fame, our conquests
narrowing eternity’s strange horizon’s
edge until the end of the world seemed sudden, intimate, and real.

All that confined us was sensual animal frailty, bodies
we then began to spare, appetites for the beauty around us,
love of the homes we had left for so long – and the hopes of the men frayed.
True to our dreams, we stood fast in the throng. We were one, and the army
set understanding aside in the end and went on. You were always
close in my hour of need, and the voice deep inside me spoke to you.

When I married you were the one by my side.
You renewed the promise we made and gave me
strength and hope and confidence I could consummate my dream.

We have won, Hephaistion – look around you!
From our center, Babylon, worlds are at hand.
Looking back at me you can see that I am ready to join you.

We were lovers once, but the love we shared before we
said goodnight before Gaugemela haunts me
now, the love between closest friends. We parted sweetly that midnight.

After all, our balcony looked out over
such strange lights and music – but you were constant,
open to my delicate questions, faithful. You put me at ease.

This one's in proper quantitative greek meter (sapphics) and it's about this video: Your Guardian Angel

Deep in confidence, lowered voices ringing
with certainty we would eclipse the myths the next day,
we exchanged our promises like two lions,
rich in our sworn fates.

Achilles and Patroclus – transcendent friends,
confidants and warriors, aggressive and loyal,
joined from childhood – rivaled us, drove us to rise,
purposes rampant.

Death in marriage sweetened our bond – a last kiss
sealed our friendship. Tears did not supersede true
confidence in strengthened love and accepted
duty in kingship.

You could stand against your own horde in raging
graphic anguish, hateful of luxuriant
wealth, nostalgia, and the modesty soldiers
prefer to greatness,

You could reject their dogged pleas to go home,
face an army desperate and unflinching,
shame them, show your breast, give no quarter, dare their
mutinous daggers

With a passion equaled by no one, peerless,
feared – but I would keep the men fearful, standing
firm, protecting their unloved king from their blows.
I, too, am fearless.

Struck down fighting India’s fabled monsters,
I knew I heard you in my soul, consoling
and alive amidst the red slaughter, breathing
thunder, a hero.

Worlds have remade their images for you, crowns
and gods greet you with solemn omens, oceans
bind your kingdom and the stars know a place where
you will live, timeless,

Part of human destiny. You look upward,
sky gods dare you – take the horizon, chase Zeus!
You give no ground. You are invincible, bold
conqueror, worshipped

Like a daemon – and yet a friend to me, frank,
tender, and true. I will still be your friend long
after you have forgotten glory, lost where
Elysian asphodel shines too yellow
and poplar forests

Keep the eyes moving up, consumed in fierce light.
I will keep your counsel in darkness, before
dawn gives you your storied entrance, a lightning
bolt on a black horse –

I will see you raise a son. I will keep you
bright as pale September comes, burnished
like a helmet wrought in red gold, your youth with
you in your wild heart.

I alone can tease out your embarrassment,
tickle pride in you, set out to torment you
until you smile. We have a private life, two
made as one, perfect.

You alone know me in the East. Love knows no
stranger story. We are apart too, others
stand so near to you, in a circle, watching.
You can still find me.

Here, when we remember all, crowns are pointless.
I am here for you in the quiet before
night dims and dawn softly collects your cities
under her long skirts.

You were just a prince when, at Phillip’s wedding,
you accused the king of disgrace, a drunkard
become helpless and far from conquering great
Persia as he boasts.

I fought for you, shared your abrupt banishment.
We were brothers, joined by the virtues we sought
to prove we cherished in ourselves, our lights and
eyes, spirit and truth.

We were right – we conquered the Persian Empire.
Achilles and Patroclus, or perhaps their
ghosts come back to feel the sun and the wind once
more, to exhale, free.

Use my strength today, my one friend. Tomorrow
I may be beyond the cosmos, gone to you.
You can remind me now of childhood games, dreams,
future conquests, myths

We will be a part of, the captive distance
worked out reliably inside your mind – speak,
I am fading fast but can hear your voice rise
and fall, advancing

Quickly, knowing time draws down with a vengeance.
I would stand beside your unequalled brightness
for all time if I could live long enough – keep
me close when night falls.

Please, let me stand forever by your side where
you can hear my voice as well – don’t let my death
be a parting. We can complete the story,
history, myth, fate.

I wrote several poems about this music video.

This one is in one of the elegiac Greek meters. I’ll have to keep working with it to learn how to use the rhetorical power of the rhythm. I can see how it would work but it doesn’t come to me yet. It’s the first time I’ve actually used the caesura in a Greek meter, I’d been disregarding that part of the line.

We were opponents as children. On the gymnasium floor I
wrestled with you as your prince. You were the strongest of us.
Pledging that I would defeat you one day, I became your devout friend.
Myths stoked passions we shared, brilliant ambitions we showed.
Maps of the world teased our inklings of destiny, framed by the unknown,
peopled by fabulous tribes, traveled by heroes and gods.
I would discover the Amazons, conquer the Caucasus, capture
jungles whose rains fed the Nile, build Alexandrias there.
Eagles would feed on the armies destroyed in my name and the sun would
set on the kingdoms that stood, ancient and proud, in my way.
I would take you to the ends of the earth to exalt our potential.
We would face giants as one, carve out a way to the East.
You would bring balance and truth to my counsel, a statesman to conquered
cities, a builder of peace. You would remake what I won.
I would not trust my own mother as I trusted you when the time came.
I would abandon my roots, ruling alone but for you.
In the dark hour my father remarried, hearing my mother’s
grim paranoia insist: I must now father a son,
I felt my heart pull away from her urgent agenda, and gently
spoke of your honesty, love, true admiration. Enough!
No Macedonian family guarded my interests, no princess
rallied a tribe to my side – you were the one with my trust.
Neither would I make alliance by marriage in Babylon, not while
Darius lived. I would wait, follow him into the East,
conquer his empire, conquer the next, until India, Persia,
Egypt, Arabia, Rome, Carthage and Europe joined Greece.
You understood. I could turn to you there in the strangest of worlds, speak
openly, question my birth, solemnly let myself go.
Where am I now in a Babylon guarded by whispering generals,
where is my perfect friend? Now I am truly a king.
Night is a gulf we can travel alone but the weight of the water,
pregnant with dreams, pulls us down. I dream of waking to you.

This one is in quantitative elegiac meter with internal rhyme, which the Greeks used for rhetorical effect.

Mounted, Bucephalus stirring beneath me to view armed hordes,
tents spread in ranks below, mindful of you but alone,
thoughts penetrating encampments suggestive of grand schemes,
I knew that we’d win the day, send our war eagle to wade
through blood, a bird of punishment, show that Darius was no more
king of the Eastern world. Treacherous pride was now ours.

We were the storm cloud the Persian generals feared, with us our strange gods,
restive, amorous, amused with us but without our irony, feuds
consuming every hero born to us. Their epic wars taught
Greeks to have skill on the field and celebrate courage, feel
pride in our battle honour, pursue fame to the death, give our heroes
songs, women and every grace. We were not people of fate.

We had our wines and fine plays, empty of flattery, humane
and tragic: Euripides, Aeschylus, Philemon – Greeks
wise to the nature of consequence, cruelty, love and hate.
We were an army scholars trained in the matter of war,
bringing with us our music, our myths on papyrus, amusements
inspiring feats we saw as traits of the Greeks.

We were not like them, at ease in tyranny. Our moods were too stubborn,
talkative, playful, profane. We said what we saw in vain.
I should know Macedonian ways, but when I, too, was answered
lightly by lesser men, I rose. It was Indian wine,
sensuous dance, the poor company – conquered courts of the wild tribes –
I, too, was drunk. But to hear Cleitus – his words were too clear.

I look to you in the chaos of drink, when my father is laughing.
Wine on the lips of a god’s royal son is dangerous, thoughts
dance in a spiral as bleak as the chorus that Troy’s women answered
greedily, grief a rip tide hungry for funeral rites,
for I forget that grief in a conquered kingdom is madness,
barren, limitless. I, ruler of all, have not died.

Persian genuflections at my feet, Roxane silk clad in green robes
beside me, I shone. Cleitus, my guardian, grown
old far from home, spoke freely as though Macedonian customs
held sway even when kings bowed at my throne. If it brings
me down here in the eyes of the princes of Asia, it risks all.
Greater than Hercules, sensitive, I am not teased.

He was my father’s friend, his blood brother in arms, whose hot scorn felt
like a proud father’s scold, words given weight by his bold
disdain for the autarchy of Bactria – he refused the honor. “No
companion rules in a bleak backwater so far from Greece,”
he claimed. Deep in his insolence I sensed a new object –
homesick hatred of lands taken on for what they spanned.

Without your shoulder at ease in my arm, what was I to do? I stared,
and an abyss, a red sink, yawned in my cups. Let it drink
bloodshed this night. If it drinks from the mouths of my companion satraps
I will still slake its thirst. Let them lie on the floor,
for they lie, they defy me – let the conspirators try!
Daemon of Phillip, away! I am not for your rod, slave!

He gave no ground – turning Cleitus out, stripped of his rank, I
called him a traitor and called him to trial, but this fanned
upward all of his accusations. I saw in these sleights
seeds of a mutiny. I asked who was with him, or why
so many held me back from him. I ran him through when his words cast
dirt on my mother’s name – he was dead. I took the blame.

He was unimpeachable, honest, the one person my father’s
faith was at ease with, loyal. He did not welcome the toil
I put our phalanx through in the jungles of India, hacking
wildly at painted men and elephants in a land
teeming with snakes, uncivilized, always in deluge – worse,
I took them as allies after our victory. Why?

I had my Promethean visions of our Greek law in kingdoms
older than Egypt. Peace bought us their army, police,
and court, influence we could not win with our foot-sore force,
long ready for home. You question my motive, too. True,
Prometheus was finally punished by Zeus. I knew the heroes
suffered for this, their pride. I had to be thus, god-like.

I can adore you and still, tempted to turn from your counsels,
wander alone in my halls. I am not closed to your thoughts,
and yet it seems strange I can have even one friend in this perfect
test of the thing itself, glory above all men. Your gift
for forgiveness calms me, true, but in utter disarray
I am the creature on high, bound to a rock in a trial.

Headstrong Achilles, conquered by his boyhood shadow, fought
Hector and won his fame, written in songs, a great name,
only when brave Patroclus was killed at the gates. Twinned
heroes, we too have fates only our bond can bear, great
deeds we will be remembered for, born of our deathless
friendship. This myth keeps me from my terror of sleep.

Still, I must be restive now. I am against the men – I killed
Cleitus when he spoke true. I am the bitter tyrant
he said, a failure. The army is headless. Here in a eunuch’s
arms, I lie, helpless. Only my friend can see this.
Strange, that a story of private love sustains me in the darkness.
Strange that your voice penetrates. Strangely, the terror abates.

I remember your thighs on my neck, your sure muscles, your fierce strength.
I was your victim one day. Thrown on your mercy again,
you are as gracious. This shakes me through to my core. It is here you
find it in yourself, here you let my awesome slip be.
No one but you can let me off. You know. Rage is my impulse.
I am at once in your debt and far from you, but at rest.

I never rallied my men with my visions of two worlds at one. I used
vengeance, claimed that Philip’s killer had made for the ships
Persia had stationed West of the wreckage of Troy. If my mother’s
hatred had taken his life, I did not know it. The knife,
Celtic but common, said nothing. Here to avenge him, the intrigue
unresolved, the men groused. Mutiny’s shade was aroused.

I had been told by an African priest that my father was no king.
He was Zeus-Ammon, the goat-horned Zeus, the king of their gods.
I was a god’s son, a ****, just as my mother had claimed. I
told my generals. It was strange. No one said – “You have not changed.”
No one but Cleitus, too late. It was true. To disown my dead father’s
pride was a crime. But this dream – I was a half-god, supreme.

I and Achilles, Heracles too, men mortal monarchs loathed
and feared, born to a king’s wife, her son, I was a king.
No hero had gone so far, won so many battles, come so high.
Once Philip spoke of the gods – and demi-gods, a grim nod.
Like all kings, they are lonely, punished men. They suffer the gods’ wrath,
grieve – don’t wish for fame, glory, love, or a great name.

You have had more than your share of my private tumult, every promised
glory a burden – the lie I was god-like had a price.
No son of Philip, avenging without cause, blinded by horror,
I set aside his love, cold. Only my mother can know.
I still shrink from my dreams, but your warmth is not mine in the long nights.
We have our days, men at once great – celebrated – yet shunned.
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 07, 2011 8:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This one is based on a fanvideo to a song performed by Cassander:

The bittersweet allowance that you make
to my ambition not to be outdone
by any man who ever lived, a god,
embracing me with piety for love
and sacrosanct achievement in this world,
convincing me my vision is your own
and that your sacrifice is gentle, true,
and charged with mutual necessity,
frees me to see in our destruction, hope.
That we will be rewarded for this gift,
that we will sublimate our privacy
and share a world enriched by its dear ghost.
To be a government as great and just
and natural as the order of the Greeks,
and still a Macedonian general,
and now a Persian despot in the East
embracing a mountain princess as queen;
to be my father’s son and still belong
among the Pantheon of demi-gods
offends the rational mind, and I stand
besieged in a conspiracy, bad faith
the service of my tutored pages, cup
the vessel of a traitor, once a friend.
I can study his eyes and consider
the world that I’ve sundered him from – the tribes
balanced each other between East and West,
the marriage alliances built the court,
the nation was fragile, kings could be slain
by their kin without incident, armies
were never so large, never inclusive.
I would reach out to the conquered with gifts
and elevate Persia, teaching the Greek
freedoms and disciplines, structures and arts,
enlarging our world, expanding our reach,
founding new cities and learning new ways;
our future extends beyond anything
tribes could imagine or govern or use.
Companions must fall, taking their bloodlines,
if they cannot comprehend the subtle
beauty of the ancient world as it is
and apprehend the justice in divine
accommodation. We need irony,
passionate love and a sense of deference
to rule this territory and transform
its people into citizens, free men.
You understood, you stood by me the night
I married my Bactrian Amazon,
a hill girl alive with the promise of fierce
adoration and unequaled courage.
You see into my future and hold tight
to the heart of my dream, the excellence
that I desire above everything.
But you cannot console me on the night
of my old general’s death upon a law
of guilt by blood that would have been the death
of me, if there had been a trial the day
my father died and I became the king.
I feel the chill of arbitrary fate
upon my breast and sink in furs, a king
of Asia stripped of Macedonian
integrity, alone except for one
who is as Persian and undone as me.
My father’s death has burned an asterisk
against the lids of my eyes that I sleep
unawares of but wake to every day,
I say goodbye to him over again
each time I part ways with my companions.
Suddenness, pride and reaction against
their complaints is a part of the impulse
that carries me on, but the casualties
of my conceit are companions I see
in my terrible sleep, and I mourn them
with all my momentum, with my whole heart.
If you hadn’t joined yourself to my dream,
I would have dreamed you were with me, I need
the myth to be complete, to have a friend
who knows I honored what I lost that day,
who knows I love him still and turn toward him
when it is time to turn in a circle,
the way journeys turn from their ends at last
and reprise their beginnings with new eyes.
Yet now you must stand back from me, you know
I cannot belong in your private gaze
any more, my demons have driven me
further than heroes have taken the myths.
You feel this excess of ambition first,
you feel it inside like a ravenous
void and it strips your affection of warmth,
you know I must live like a god, alone
on a rock, and the image is punishing,
part of your sweet disquiet at nightfall,
following me to the door, lonely, grieved.
You alone know I must love more than one,
I must take to myself every precious
love that is true to my passionate dream.
If she hadn’t come to be, I would have
found a way to the distant sea to find
my Eastern queen, conquered its opposite
failing a love at the ends of the earth.
You saw that I was unstoppable, true
to the myth of my birthright, virtuous,
great enough to become a peerless king.
You will always be the first, the lover
who made me who I am, you brought the day
to my life and you saw me through twilight
over and over again, your goodnight
freed me of fear of myself and of death
and your wonderment matched my achievement
with grace and a wise circumspection, kind.
If love hadn’t found me, though love never
bound me, I would have searched for my whole life.
To my own death I brought purity, faith
in destiny, godhead ordained and won
in a world our gods had only traveled,
my servant the gentle companion pained
to stand by as I worked my way to you,
son of a priestess, heir of a general,
student of fear and all humanity
following one who had smiled on my faith.
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