(after the saxifraga flower)
We survived the last ice age, huddling
Eye-to-eye in a land of clouds, skylight of open air
Looking down on distant hills of ice, pillows of snow.
We are the unsung song of the Cuilcagh Mountains,
In tune with the howls of the wind
Constant crunch and crackle of ice chunks.
We are the dream catchers
Flowers growing for ghosts,
We are outlaws revelling on our own
Hanging on to arteries of stone.
We are fossil flowers, a blizzard of bloom,
Tough and tender, bent on growing into seed.
Our only prayers that some seeds may fly
With the winds of chance
Into the open mouths of years to come.
SURPRISED BY WORDS
Our brain power grew.
We could light fires,
Stitch skins together. We headed North
With flint spears, throwing stones at wild horses,
Cattle ... Sleeping in the brown bear’s cave.
We lifted our arms to implore the sun to stay
But night came down, herds of stars grazed in the dark
The moon opened her eye
and we prayed
That the ghosts would leave us alone.
Surprised by words, we played with sounds
Heard them changing into other words:
Piter, Pater, Da, Do, Di- ri, Toop...
The rain softened our faces, we laughed, wept,
And coupled words with our fears and told them as stories.