So it is the case with we of the divine race
that mortals will never agree on our ancestry.
Long was I the Lady Beneath the Earth,
Mistress of Irkalla, alone I was sovereign.
I was feared and worshipped across the lands
from the Caspian Sea to the banks of the Nile.
Even the Greeks under Thrice-Great Hermes
would call upon me as a fierce and primal power.
They say that Nergal with his ghost chair
stormed Kurnugi and made me his wife.
Nergal was free to come and go,
a secret known to few and fewer each year.
He was no co-ruler, is now no absentee landlord
and my sovereignty is not questioned
by those under it.
No, it was an insertion
and interruption to the evenness of my rule.
It was the silliness of a twisted fool,
the one blinded by the light of Aten.
He usurped the victorious gesture of the Pharaohs
and forgot devotion to Osiris of the black lands.
He stole the horned light crown of the lady Hathor
and donned its glory with craned and crooked neck.
He pilfered the ankh from the hand of Re-Harakhte
thinking it his toy, his top, his childish plaything.
When at last he met his end and came before Osiris,
the kind lord pronounced judgement upon him:
“Great is the sacrilege you have done to the Netjeru,
but greater is that done to our cherished guest.
Therefore, to her I leave judgement.”
He came before me a jittering mess of nerves.
I took his crown, I took his scepter,
I took his chariot, his horses, his whip.
I took his sandals, I took his jewelry,
I took his linens and his rings and
I took, and still take, his food and water,
his offerings, his prayers, and his breath.
There is no pity for those who do not rise
when even my messengers come for their share.
There is no mercy for those who steal my sustenance
and refuse me a portion in the feast of the gods.
The Queen of Heaven is my sister and friend,
our drama was one where the outcome was known.
No enmity can last between two daughters.
No power do I have over those from the gods
or from humans with no powers of generation,
I fear them.
But he whose name I forget
I only laugh at as he hangs behind me,
a ragged trophy of his own hunt gone bad.
There is only one ruler of this underworld,
but so many underworlds beyond counting.
The heavens are wide, expansive, plural
neighborhoods of divine and celestial powers.
Therefore, beware, you advocates of the Unconquerable Sun,
for there have been suns beyond number.