To Mithridates

“What is great in man is that he is a bridge and not an end.” – Thus Spoke Zarathustra

The Overman, if “man,” and not a saint,
Draws worlds of pain to him at board and trestle,
Eats well, whose palate deadly truth and taint,
Tastes gladly, that would kill a weaker vessel.

But know: your sickness yields nor fruit nor foison.
The Overman nor life nor death could hate.
You, Mithridates, feared, far worse than poison,
Our all indifferent, unavoided fate.

The more fool you. Death, when it comes,
Comes as a gift, like life itself. The cup
Of Benedict, they say, was poisoned once.
He blessed it, and it shattered. Christ took up

The cup once offered. Know: each death brings life
To rot, green out of grey, and peace in strife.