5
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I am the two and the one.

I give life, hold life, fill life,

But I also kill - and hide - and steal.

I'm in your backyard - go look, I'm there!

I am the two and the one.

Two of the simple, the active, the friendly.

One with cattle, the Spanish, and the generation.

I'm inside your head - don't look - that would be kind of dumb, not to mention painful. Seriously.

I am the two and the one.

Were a terrible enemy rising, I would not quail.

Should a deadly foe come, I would have no fear.

I would simply keep going, and going, and going.

Forever and ever.

Endlessly.

The direct answer might not be too hard, but finding how all of the clues fit might be harder - and is a point of the puzzle. Enjoy!.

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I think you are

water.

The two and the one are

hydrogen and oxygen, respectively.

I give life, hold life, fill life,

All living things on our planet depend on water. (I think.) Many things live in water -- fish, whales, seaweed, etc. And of course we're all mostly water.

But I also kill - and hide - and steal.

You can drown. Not sure how specific "hide" and "steal" are here; e.g., things at the bottom of the sea are pretty inaccessible, and things can be carried off by the tide.

I'm in your backyard - go look, I'm there!

A few metres down, perhaps.

Two of the simple, the active, the friendly.

Hydrogen is the simplest of all chemical elements. Not sure why it's especially "active" or "friendly", though.

One with cattle, the Spanish, and the generation.

OX + Y + GEN.

I'm inside your head - don't look - that would be kind of dumb, not to mention painful. Seriously.

Cerebrospinal fluid, in addition to the water inside every cell in your body.

Were a terrible enemy rising, I would not quail.
Should a deadly foe come, I would have no fear.

Water has nothing much to be afraid of. Also, there's a bit of steganography here: were a terrible enemy rising.

I would simply keep going, and going, and going.
Forever and ever.
Endlessly.

Seems a bit of an exaggeration. Probably no more than a few billion years here on earth.

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  • $\begingroup$ I wondered whether that was what you meant by "active" and "friendly" but it wasn't clear to me why it applied (e.g.) any more to the Two than to the One. $\endgroup$ – Gareth McCaughan Apr 7 at 1:05
  • $\begingroup$ Well, I found one instance of that tag. Haven't checked whether there are more. (No more that work the same way, I think.) $\endgroup$ – Gareth McCaughan Apr 7 at 1:08
  • $\begingroup$ Checkmark coming soon. Just want to let this question get a few more views, if that's alright with you. $\endgroup$ – Brandon_J Apr 7 at 1:14
  • $\begingroup$ Feel free! (The longer it stays open, the more precious precious upvotes my answer can get, I suppose.) $\endgroup$ – Gareth McCaughan Apr 7 at 1:21
  • $\begingroup$ Ah, I think that's enough. There ya go! $\endgroup$ – Brandon_J Apr 7 at 20:59

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