To Climb

The London Magazine - - PETER ABBS -

from Latin as­cen­dere: to rise. Ah! – worn down De­los, you lie in the late sun, co­matose. A mil­lion tourists have zoomed in with their ipads and cam­eras

to snap your soul. At the end of the hottest sum­mer, as ho­tels and tav­er­nas start to close, we re­turn, climb, rise slowly through burnt pop­pies, this­tles,

parched grass. Apollo, Sol, Medi­cus, I would hon­our you but af­ter two thou­sand years only the lizards re­main loyal, your dart­ing sen­tinels, as the eye of civil­i­sa­tion blurs.

At the top of the sa­cred moutain I gaze far across blue shimmering wa­ter-tracks to the an­cient past: Paros, Naxos, Crete. And can en­vis­age no fu­ture, no as­cent,

no over-arch­ing light. So I stack three stones: prayer to no god on wind-scarred rocks, self-per­plex­ing apo­ria.

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