The Phalanx

The counselor held a seed in his palm. What is this? he asked the phalanx. It is a seed, said the phalanx. No, it is a vine, the counselor replied. And the vine is fruit and leaves. The fruit and leaves rot, ferment and mold. And the rot, fermentation and mold are earth and seeds. It does not follow, the phalanx sighed, weary of hearing about atoms and space. All things return to the void, it intoned. Nobody has seen and lived to speak of the void, the counselor warned in a deathly whisper, but everyone has seen chaff, firewood, mulch, vinegar, wine, and soil. Tomorrow eats today. All of your dreams, science, desires and prayers already belong to your enemies and those who disagree with you. Your seed is someone else’s vine, your grapes are someone else’s wine. The phalanx shuddered.