Enheduanna (c. 2300 B.C) was a Sumerian priestess, and the first known poet, male or female, of prehistory. Her work reminds us of how long man has warred in folly.
—Freely adapted and translated by Daniela Gioseffi
You hack everything down in battle….
God of War, with your fierce wings
you slice away the land and charge
disguised as a raging storm,
growl as a roaring hurricane,
yell like a tempest yells,
thunder, rage, roar, and drum,
expel evil winds!
Your feet are filled with anxiety!
On your lyre of moans
I hear your loud dirge scream.
Like a fiery monster you fill the land with poison.
As thunder you growl over the earth,
trees and bushes collapse before you.
You are blood rushing down a mountain,
Spirit of hate, greed and anger,
dominator of heaven and earth!
Your fire wafts over our land,
riding on a beast,
with indomitable commands,
you decide all fate.
You triumph over all our rites.
Who can explain why you go on so?