A spiky urchin sliced will bear pearled flesh:
So many questions wait to be resolved.
Blood seeps and blisters under blackened mesh,
Labyrinthine brain of coral dissolved,
Small hopes for solace in times of strife and pain.
What becomes of a million scribbled lines?
Papery ribs of wasp’s nests scorched in a match’s flash,
Fantastic ice-flows pouring out a moraine,
Cold fossil spirals of ancient nautilus?
Can song or tale survive when its source declines?
Tall fortresses of timber were burned to ash
By marauding bands, then turned by a plow’s blade.
What hope some comfort might be left for us
In summer stones where empires first were laid?