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Inch high on the plain of ages

a camera watches Time's roller lumber by

pocked and scarred by millennia

it flattens all under each massive revolution

crushing pebbles, planets, civilizations

long expired, stalks and husks of old reapings

all stamped smooth into the faceless surface

that stretches dun forever to the thin line

where sky and stage unite in gray and brown


Between each turn the heavens whirl

their eternal carousel, lace fragments

against the black, a ceaseless monotone

save for the fractional creep from frame

to frame of almost identical images

distinguished each from the last only by the

faintest whisper of a thin cosmic wind


Somewhere, unclear by random chance or ghostly design

a tiny distillation occurs, a drop of liquid

instantly absorbed into the dry plain's dust

and then, after another roller-turn, a second

and a third; then only starwatch, ignored, forgotten


As if by preordained accident, a flaw, micron-thin

splits open upon the plain, a crack, a fissure

that disturbs the camera's unwinking eye

and into the cold starlit sand a point appears,

a rustle unfolds and thrusts into expanding green

awareness and then another and a third


Impassive, silent, the camera whirrs as from the east

the roller returns, huge, uncaring, its scars so close,

it’s frozen metal wrenched from doom


And then it passes, in it's wake a swath of green

as strands of chance begin their dance

of life unseen

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© Johnmichael Simon



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