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Posts Tagged ‘duty’

For want of anything better
We climbed the hill at Narberth,
Bellies full, awaiting wonders.

But as we looked abroad
The land was empty and bare:
Void and desolate.

The clouds race unremarked,
The fields empty, no drift of chimney smoke,
No children’s laughter.

Because you have forgot the turnings in the road;
Forgot the choices, slipped down the easy paths
And left the future to evaporate,
All this has happened.

Once and again,
The tide of light recedes,
The storm winds roar.
There will be no shelter
But the future we fashion for ourselves.

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A CERTAIN BLEAK BEAUTY

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1
Endless rains
I wake early before dawn.
The dreams I recall
Are of loss and confusion.

2
The bonfires burn blue and bitter.
The mantra of compassion rings hollow
When all harvests have failed.

3
News from home is slow to arrive:
The roads often impassable,
Slow and winding
Through the hills.

4
My bones are weary.
I turn restless, from side to side.
The flies circling the room
Slower and slower each day
Fail to find the open window.

5
Though we are far
from the borderlands
Everyone fears invasion.

6
A song from the past
I cannot quite remember,
Of the moon and a girl
And a river.

7
Wind from the mountains
Tastes of snow.
The grasses are lank
and yellowing.

8
There is a certain bleak beauty
In the dark night,
Filled only
with the echoing cries of foxes.

9
News from the capital
Is dreary and unconvincing:
Familiar, lazy formulas.
The treasuries are empty,
The halls smell stale of old food.

10
Only this small thin cat is content
Paws flicking in sleep,
Curled up warm.

A collection of fleeting images, reflecting the present, but echoing the laments of those border guards of Ancient China

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