The narrow pass at Thermopylae
once only several hundred feet wide,
now, as far as the eye can see,
is over five miles from side to side.
Over millennia many’s the battle
been fought, gore and blood spilled,
the combatants decimated like cattle,
grim acres by the stern god of war tilled.
The name Thermopylae translates as “hot gates,”
through which hot springs of hell bubble over,
a cauldron of fatalities and sulfates,
like cracked skulls in a field of clover.
Mineral springs normally spawn health spas:
Thermopylae breathed brimstone and grew claws.