Poems and Places

An Impermanent Path

a place of enforced solitude
a temporary surface
a washboard for a man’s fortitude
a horizontal horizon drawn neatly
between the curve of the sea and the sky
two halves of a broken eggshell
brought together
to form a vista
to compel those eyes
toward a flat
featureless void
_____a place where footfalls are silent
_____transient
_____quenched by inevitabilities
where priests and pagans
_____and poets
traipse
in-between the flow and ebb
of a pitiless tide

The Naked King

Proleek Tomb

Four millennia has stripped more than
a pound of flesh from your bones
the naked king is exposed to all
______wanderers and weather
well-wishers and the wicked alike
bask in your ancient silhouette
______unmoved
by modernia
______unhindered
by the creep of crass chronologies
created by curious caretakers of faiths

The naked king reigns
the metaphoric monarch of imaginations
imagines all of us
our fleeting lives like dragonflies around
a stagnant pool
_______still
as he has stayed and will stay
until the wanderers and weather
wear his form from bone to stone
from stone to memory
from memory to
______nothingness

Steve Downes, photographer and poet, was born in Country Louth in 1973 and educated in NUI Maynooth. He holds a Degree in Classical History and a Masters in Anthropology, and is a published poet since 1996. These two paired poems and photos are from his most recent project.

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