Tumbledown

Somewhere sparsely inhabited
A long stretch
Staring down at its heels
Alongside the crescent
That looks to see the sea

With a mouth at its back
And heads at its flanks
Gasping with white teeth bared
Or striped with green and red
Gashed with ochre

Flooding down slope
Carrying those uprooted
Along for the ride
Where they can only slide
Into an untidy heap
Without pride

On top of the ridge
Beneath the crest
Of fraught brow
That cannot let go
Without letting slip
What once it held
So insecurely in its grasp

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Somewhere densely packed
With everywhere in clusters
Bedded into hillside
And standing out on pavement
Recoiling ancient memory
Wrapped around each present

Until prized out
By ardent hammer
Striking it rich
In shattered peace
That can’t sit out a lifetime

Waiting
To gain acclaim for claiming
Possession for its owner
Above the humble crowd

That lies through aeons of silence
Until some ardent hammer
Strives to dig it out
And lay it bare

Abstracted from its deathbed
Where no one ceased to care
But held its breath for ages
Before gasping in fresh air
And dying yet again
As a museum piece

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