. The Calendar You are the festive dregs of January,you liven February with Valentine’s.You are the March that gives spring sanctuary,you are the splashing rain April confines.You entertain the shaken buds of May,then are the shining June that bronzes all.You’re endless July---every holiday,you’re balmy August thwarting autumn’s pall.You are September’s time of education,you are the hugging scarf October needs.You are November’s clear night sky explosion,you are December’s excess, its misdeeds.__You are the calendar in all its prime,__a force of nature weathering my rhyme. . . Philip II of Macedon's Victory Speech If you can stand, stand proud and hear me speak;if by your wounds you’re low, lie on, unshamed, with no disgrace, for we have taken the day.Those fateful Moirai, sent from Zeus’s throne, did thread us well, now under fading sun the wares of war allot us all. Oh men,great bent and boar-like battling have I seenas you for me set-to to end our foe. And on and on you went, until each spearwas by its enemy’s bone blunted and could stab no more; but then you did, more! And so we’ve vanquished fast and firm this knitted Athenian-Theban consort and by gracioushand of gods receive into our realm this place of Hellas. The land entire is ours. In time we’ll march unto the Peloponnese where all therein will either overgivethemselves to kingdom new or suffer similar expiration as we have seen today. But heed, bright men, courageous men, refresh your battered frames, do take a time to bathe and heal your mottled flesh, for you have earned respite, each and every one of you,you multi-charactered beast, you scything choir;you have fought and filched us Chaironeia! . . Jez Punter lives in London, UK. When not working as a professional chef he writes poetry and plays. He has staged two verse plays – The Duke and the Architect and The Great and the Cynical – at London fringe theatres. His poetry has appeared in physical and online publications such as First Time; Popshot; Bunbury; Eunoia; Snakeskin; Riggwelter; Dream Catcher; and theCRANK. He is currently writing a commentary on Shakespeare’s Sonnets.