He sat at the very top, the pinnacle of His ivory tower, a tower built from the bones of the millions who perished in His wake. He looked down at all He purveyed and tallied His possessions in His acquiring little head. He looked down on the women, the children, the men of lesser birth and darker skin, the disabled, the old and those who survived on the fringes of the society he had built with the blood and bones of his slaves.
He brought His women up into his tower, He chose the ones He desired and made them His wives. He gave the men scraps and tokens and they took them gladly-one day they could be Him if they just worked hard enough, if they behaved like Him, if they followed His lead.
And the women toiled, starved of freedom and autonomy many lost the fight in them. Those that fought did not last long, He gave those as prizes to the men who did His bidding.
But while He had all the gold in the kingdom, all the land in the realm He was not happy. While He had all the people under His heel He was not happy. He was not happy because every action, every thought and every move He made was steeped in hatred. He never felt calm, He never felt love or peace. He never felt fulfilled-He owned the world but had nothing-because nothing he had was freely given to Him. He was surrounded but alone.
If only He had known that to open the doors on His ivory tower, to give back all He’d taken, to free His people and treat them as equals He would open up His only chance of lasting happiness.
But the draw of the possessions and power was just too great. He could not pick a path through to the good that could be. And so he stayed where he was and when he passed, in his place another man replaced him and after him another. The women, the children, the men of lesser birth and darker skin, the disabled, the old and those who survived on the fringes of the society did just that-they survived, getting by. And all the while they did so in the shadow of that ivory tower, their heads and hearts; poppies, heavy with seed.