Tuesday, November 15, 2005

A City At The Brink

On the hill there's a city with golden streets.
The folk there wear jewels and go robed in silk.
This is a bright city and rules a shining land.
A peaceful city rests at the desert's brink.
Water flows beneath it.

In the marketplace, they gather and meet,
These folk who wear jewels and go robed in silk.
Gold flows from hand to hand.
They call it life, love, meat, drink.
They'd like to breathe it.

The marketplace is closed, though business is not complete.
Dusk-children go begging milk.
In this bright city that rules a shining land,
They huddle at trash fires. The city stinks.
And now smoke wreathes it.

Cold ashes bear the prints of forgotten feet.
Walls and roofs are fallen, or lean together a-tilt.
Jewelled bones stare from drifting sands.
A peaceful city rests at the desert's brink.
No traveller leaves it.

Nowhere in all this waste will you meet
One who was there when the golden city was built.
Ask, when you see the traces of their hands
What did the jewelled people think?
Water still flows beneath it.

10 comments:

...deb said...

Mysterious, that city on the brink. I like what feels like an evocative history lesson.

Crafty Green Poet said...

seems like a sobering lesson for civilisation to me...

Pauline said...

"what did the jeweled people think?"

I read and reread this and each time the rhythm seemed to catch and throw the words. It is an effective form for this particular story.

wendy said...

"Dusk-children go begging milk"

WOW.

"They call it life, love, meat, drink."

Double WOW.

tumblewords said...

Haunting words of places gone by. Beautiful, frightening and provocative.

AnnieElf said...

A haunting and bleak glimpse of a possible future for us.

Rethabile said...

Bleak. And musical at the same time. What a feat.

Linda said...

Oh, my, rhyme done right! What a treat! ~Linda

Cathy said...

Excellent! Love how you combined eveything together.

www.thequietone.net

Dennis said...

I've always been afraid of this poetry form - intimidated mostly. It's amazing what you do with it. This is the second one you've written recently that has really captured my attention. Just wonderful! Congrats.