The Markfield Tomb
Though it’s April now, when even shades are bright,
what was A Fine & Noble Wife Below remains unsprung.
Her monument in leafy tongues battered out of stone declares
that The End of Time is the Beginning of Eternity.
So she waits, in a lapidary swimming-pool with four
stone pineapples, departed, but not there yet,
for the Fiery Crane, and watches while she floats,
to the north, south, east and west.
The silver birches hold their silver breaths :
under the pavement Eternity counts – seventeen million
six hundred and fourteen thousand eight hundred
and ninety two. An angel sucks his trumpet.
Sometimes up, sometimes down, from pinkish coffin cliffs
to wet, black, corky beds, the Noble Wife treads water.
Down we go : the lawnmower is coming, tossing wisps of hay
into the springing air. The birches glitter on the wind.
The Markfield Tomb by John Gallas was Commended in the Sentinel Literary Quarterly Poetry Competition May 2016 judged by Mandy Pannett.