Crater - Poem by Tony Jennett
So, hello vertigo! Bane of other's lives not mine.
But this: teetering in the ash of a crater's rim
Where should be a road, smoothed, relief a-shine
In its hedgerow? The Stubborn Reaper's grim
Scythe hacked off my will in harvesting you
And I no longer care where I'm standing or falling to.
Fettered for ever in prison whence you have escaped.
My feet, shuffling the creep-falling ash are rooted
As rowan in the rock of your passing. Lidless, raped
By your dust, you force my eyes to see the convoluted
Pie-crust of your pride broken; and the very meat
Of your soul, prey to maggots of deceived defeat.
Smashed out of your mind! Each passing train now burns
New meaning of the cliche'd phrase in mine
Where the blind hawk of agony swoops turns
And tears with every mention of a railway line.
Quietus; eternal forgetting; may have set you free
But what in burning Hell-on-earth has it done to me
I know, but now, in crucifixion, cannot weave
The tapestry of time's almighty power to save.
It hurts too much, this soon. I promised not to grieve
While vanities fill in the crater of your grave,
Leaving the banal words of my dishonoured pledge
Flickering, like votive candles, round its bleeding edge
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