(From) The Calderstones

(Camera Obscura, Rockingham Press, 2016)


             The park in autumn. Dim thunder,

a child on a swing and arcing

like a pendulum, the red stones

grouped in shadow and safely parked.


Six stones left, but you would know

the place beyond its thickened air.

We have cleared, lost and retrieved, made

rooms in suburban verdancy.


We have left you the grunt of stone

as witness. Sometimes I have thought

I heard sounds from the river, moving

through the marsh, spirits I watched for,


but they did not come. Perhaps you

were here? Against your coming, I

waited. Though watching for long,

still you did not come. I have lived long


but I cannot live much longer,

meantime I bury our dead here

and the red stone crowns them. More, more

they leave, and now I am alone.


Truth is, we're all solitaries

by Calderstones, burying dead,

sharing our time with shattered graves

talking to us, not listening. 


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