in the West, and shining
yet from Caesar,
few grey houses round a broken cross
friend-like in the ringing hills; these are
and altar, set in fosse and valium,
unsworded salvage of the Roman loss.
wars are all gone over and their trouble.
bell that ringing always rings unheard,
for their sins gives weary nations double.
are the unfought hills. Their loving kindness
on the spirit like a singing bird.
Gillalees the beacons go unlighted,
of the gorse more brilliant after rain.
Battle Rigg there are no pennons sighted,
only lambs cry down the road of the legions
Fawcettlees as far as Triermain.
Kinkry Cairn the heather evenings dream.
Rinnion Hills the scented dews are shaken,
noon comes down in might from Amboglanna
make them dark in his imperial gleam.
weary I am of the war this world inherits
things that wither and words that wither, the praise
those would have me be as they, withering spirits,
of success—the Roman battle
the same barren end of Roman days.
me the Waste in worship; give me the manna
minds wayfaring, poor enough to pray,
the windy moon silvers forgotten Banna,
curlews cry in the twilight over the Border
Voices, yearning voices, a world away.
Copyright © 2008 [Fen Tyler]