Empires and Sunsets

fourteen years into my fifty
before my heart ached under a crush of leaves
we moved house like a carnival leaves town

eternity of a summer holiday ahead, I leaped,
at four a.m. into the forest with a typewriter
eager as a alchemist to ensnare the elixir:

sunsets burst like the fall of glorious empires
Upper Roddlesworth shimmered like the Klondike
iron shadows of trees rusted in last-light

I was a brave: the dark-dread was years away
shadows blossomed in roots-bowls and gullies
my typewritten words echoed across the reservoir

the forest leaned over my shoulder and whispered
I listened, my words fathomed the dark
as dragnets of cloud wrenched up the shoal of the sun

lion-eyed and tired, I kicked my heels home
through July’s fields into August, I ploughed
the golden acres until September stopped my heart

Patrik Gryst


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