In the seventh chamber of the dead
where Osiris crouches on his throne,
a young man shuffles into line
and hears through marble walls
precise beautiful words –
Hardy, Eliot, Yeats –
words to comfort a damned
soul. But what price today
a post-colonial reinvigoration
of a dying tongue,
an ecocentred debate
on modern pastoral, the periphery
of the ascetic? All that balls
he studied with excess of love.
Mythical allusion, the oblique
lyric…At 9am on Monday morning,
half-crazed, he recites it in a verse,
laughing at the end of the line
while Anubis weighs the scales
and Thoth inscribes the fate
of half the youth of Europe.
I live in Bangor, N Ireland. Poems have appeared in The Honest Ulsterman, FourXFour at poetryni.com,The Stare’s Nest, Snakeskin, Panning for Poems and several other online magazines.