Wednesday, March 02, 2011

421. traditions

A hidden ancient passage
under these tufts of uneven pasture
leads to a stone-lined tunnel,
uncovered, not by scholars,
but by the local IRA
intent on hiding weapons.

Traps for indigent robbers
have been worn away by decay,
and in the core of the inner sanctum
three large and separate open graves,
lie carefully, reverently surrounded
by treasure and homely objects:

combs and knives,
little personal tools,
for even kings need things
in the Other World.

Under rain sodden fields above,
the generations of philosophic cattle,
and hidden for more than a thousand years:
this golden torc, jewellery, six crumbling swords,
seven exquisite little silver drinking cups
of meticulous execution, shoved off
to the side now by rifles.