Wednesday, 28 April 2021

“The Alexander Quartet” Four Haiku by John Maxwell O'Brien

 

The Alexander Quartet by John Maxwell O’Brien

 

A Father’s Shadow


Is cast deep and wide

We amble…under it…long

After…he…has…died




Philip II and his son Alexander the Great drawn by Doug Jamieson



A Mother’s Shadow


Even in the womb

Enveloped by love…and fear

From birth…to…our…tomb




Olympias and her son Alexander the Great drawn by Doug Jamieson



Greatness


We…see…something …great

In our own…early on…but

Few…meet…such…a…fate




 Alexander astride the untameable Bucephalas drawn by Doug Jamieson



Hero


Earth’s end…I must meet

Hero’s quest…while…the…world

Lay there…at…his…feet




A silver tetradrachm minted during Alexander the Great’s lifetime and owned by Dorothy O’Brien, the author’s commander-in-chief.




John Maxwell O’Brien is an emeritus professor of history (Queens College, CUNY) who has written scores of articles on the ancient and medieval worlds. His best-selling scholarly biography, Alexander the Great: The Invisible Enemy (Routledge), has been translated into Greek and Italian, and is currently being translated into Arabic. His celebrated novel, Aloysius the Great (Propertius Press), features a history professor who is writing a biography of the Macedonian conqueror. Professor O’Brien and his daughter Christine O’Brien are currently collaborating on an illustrated lyrical biography of Alexander the Great.

 

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