Castle Hill In Church Woods - Poem by Andrew Rimmer
Into the eerily thin reality of Church Woods
Narrow forbidding path passing the churchyard;
Above behold sentinel headstone crosses, silhouetted black.
Silence suspends; the caw of carrion crows high in the canopy.
This dark harmony of twilight slides into a presentiment:
A restive sound of many jostling horses,
Indistinct yet audible voices: angry, cajoling, threatening:
Aromatic smells of wood smoke and incense.
Two disparate worlds - ages overlaying:
Two train windows coming together briefly:
A revelation glimpsed from another's journey.
Castle Hill arises; a realm past: bailey perched atop motte.
Led around the spectral moat without design,
Facing a knight cast in diffuse blue grey shadow:
Metal of helmet and chainmail flecked in pearl white,
An enigmatic bond made willingly but fleetingly.
Horsemen dragging their prone prisoner by rope:
Riding out; eagles circling towards their estuary: a fate spent
Yet unknown: a wound in the temporal void. Reality ripples, thickens;
Darkness of night ascends Church Wood: aircraft noise overhead.
Castle Hill, nevertheless, imperturbably still towers above;
Impregnable to all and impossibly to time itself;
For time has revealed its nature by its mercy, and is merciless.
Forever in the abyss: between the corporeal and the eternal.
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