Telemachus — or The Power of One Man

This cry did echo through the air,
From Colosseum rise.
I stood in morbid fascination,
As did the crows and flies.

Before me stretched a scene of blood,
Where dead and dying groan.
The gladiators greased in gore,
But none would die alone.

The winner only held the field,
The vanquished all around.
Most were dead – and cruelly marred,
But one lived on the ground.

Beneath his foe the wounded lay
He gasping bloody breaths,
The winner looking to the crowd,
Who screamed and wailed for “Death!”

Then as the winner raised his sword,
I gaped in sickened awe.
This evil scene of sin must stop!
It breaks fair Heaven’s Law.

But how could this colossal sport,
Come now unto an end?
There must be some one who will stand,
And innocence defend.

Then my conscience pricks me hard,
“Will you not then speak out?”
But can one man stop these great games?
Too futilely small no doubt.

And so I watched in silence as,
This sword made fatal arch.
Too fearful and ashamed was I,
Then one beside me starts.

“Halt these bloody games!” he cries,
“In Jesus name, now stop!”
This monk, then pushing through the crowd,
To the arena drops.

“Halt these bloody games!” he cries,
And raising up his hands,
He thrusts the winner’s sword aside,
So, Telemachus stands.

The crowd was silenced by this man –
One man – there in the pit.
In his face the Lord shone forth,
“In Jesus’ name, repent!”

There was no violence in his hand,
So holy was his act.
The crowd would not abide his word,
And with one heart attack.

With hands of hate they seized the monk,
And dragged him to the street,
Then they stoned Telemachus there,
No mercy in their heat.

This blameless monk they beat and cursed,
With stones they laid him low.
He did not fight, but only prayed,
The killed him on the road.

The suns set and the vultures came,
To feast upon his bones.
I, weeping, did not know that night,
His words reached to the throne.

Next day the emperor banned the games,
No longer did they run.
Forever the arena closed,
So great the power of one.

There is no system then so great,
That never can be banned.
One righteous man may throw it down,
Pray, will you be that man?

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