Archaeology

1 May 2014

1.
In a mythical demountable
we are students of the sword,

cotton-gloved rabbits,
a few aeons late
to taste the blade’s full thrust.

Creeping green curdles bronze,
suckles the edges off. It sleeps

in its labelled, cardboard
coffin – one eye open,
aching to callous palms,
aching for salt and bone.

Bronze molecules grit
their teeth at tender reverence:
millennia of students
who stroke away
the knife’s last trace of blood.

2.
I shaved my legs before I came over.

You noticed, and said
they were whitewashed pillars,
artful ruins beneath the lights.

Maybe you should buy dimmer bulbs;
I wouldn’t want to you to surmise
too much. I’m here to forget.

You shine your torch
and chisel and brush, and
chalk an X over certain parts.

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