Silver will never disintegrate or fade
because it's dead. Charlie emerges from the mine
a washed-out half-life     blue eyes blinkered
for the hole ahead (no parakeet, no sign
of life).     It is a metalloid eternity
that slides life downward-forward into decay of
everything around the cave mouth crumbling
a furrowed hillside Charlie's mastery...

Under the steel sword     over the mantle
a leaf of petrified coral smoulders     fitfully
surrounded by black lakes of glinting coal

& what was mirrored there     dark eyes could tell
no one, no one     arose     petal by petal
leaf by leaf,     rose     everlastingly

Henry Gould | Island Road 18
Contents | Mudlark No. 6