The landscape itself
is cracked and pitted.
Quarries gouged out of the rock face.
Concrete jungles
where forests grew.
A million species drowned
by hydro-electric schemes.
Roman grain bowls
becoming the Sahara desert.

And the figures
that pass through this landscape,
four-footed, two, or none
with scar of tooth and claw
of virus, germ and epidemic.
With facsimiles of torture, rape and death
stored in a kaleidoscopic heap
beneath the not-entirely-undisturbed
surface of the mind.

Forgive and forget, says Prospero.
“Vengeance is Mine,” saith the Lord,
“I will repay.”
“Shantih, shantih, shantih,”
sings the Upanishad.
“There is this one way…”
begins the Blessed One.


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