Cesario de Torium, one of the great clerics at the turn of the first millennium in the Age of Kings, wrote this poem in response to what he considered a “tragic glorification of the terrors of war,” after sentiment began to grow in his lifetime for a supposed “reconquista,” or a reclamation of land within Caelon once belonging to the Torian Empire, from the Warathi conquerors who now inhabit it. Being old enough to have lived through the Northern Campaign that ended at the Battle of Gelgadongo, as well as being an ardent scholar of history, he sought to stymie sentiment for a new war as he feared it would only bring further destruction, death and decay throughout the land.
“The Gifts of War”
In the start of the chaos storm that swept across the land,
In ages past, when the Gifts of God were still within man,
When the Kings were first born and the Emperor not yet come,
And people placed their will and faith in the beats of the drum,
Behind Kings with great powers, they stood and they cast their lots,
Not yet knowing the full price for the battles to be fought,
They believed in their causes, for victory to be won;
They knew not the price to be paid when the battle was done.
“My cause is righteous and my dominion is God-given”
Said every son of the Son despite their religion.
The vanity that brought about the great fall of mankind
Once tightly woven in cords now had begun to unwind.
For lessons learned long ago are lost when greed rears its head,
And when thrones sit too long empty, even servants are led
To believe that they could be King, as in ages long ago
Ignoring the legacy of death that their sins did sew.
And so the Gifts of the Son that were given to the fewCesario de Torium
Were used to build glorious shrines to themselves all anew.
And the currency to be paid for their monuments breadth
Was the blood of their people, taken in most gruesome death.
For the Gifts of War are brought on by a great hungry greed
And the graveyards they build will be included in the deed.
So beware, all ye who wish to lead armies to battle
For permanent homes in the fields aren’t only for cattle.