November 2010

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Requiem for Camelot

I hear the darkness
whispering words of
small remembrance
through the orchards on
the long way back from
that dusk so long ago when
we whirled on vernal wings
through soft accordion sounds
of no apparent weight and
sat our easy hour in the sky
until it shattered and
shards of fluttering
fireworks sprinkled down
and we knew not who we were
nor any god to trust,
and thus were we touched
by the warts of earth and
put away childish things.
I stood there amazed
on the Otterbrook Road and
watched the heavens shrink
to small smashed sparks
and nothing after that was
ever truly innocent again.
A hammer waits in every life
and all will know the anvil
of the times and the moment
that the boy dies in the man.
It is not for nothing that
time squirms on the tongue
and memories tumble in
the angers of earth and
carry the burdens of those
who have sinned against us.
And thus we all grow old
before we are new again.
I sweep the dented seasons
from my doorstep, scrape
the stubble from my face and
go to the Old North Church
where ghosts bear witness
to themselves and
history licks the wounds
of royal and ancient wars
and bells and lanterns
show the way, one if by road,
two if by sea, and the trick is
to know that light is forever
darkness a little farther on
and the answer is always
that life can never die
and death can never live.
Ask not what your country
can do for you but what
you can do for your country.
Every orchard has its fruit
and every sky its light
and nothing ever falls
that is truly lost to god.

© 2010