WE WOULD GO BACK EVEN TO STONE
What God or gods or men will care to hear our tale
Blind witless fellows on waves' way who weep and rail?
On land we neither cut our names in permanent stone,
Nor scrawled them in dust for wind to whip into a tune.
Neither our song stirred the hearts of men, nor washes
Your beloved feet but stains them where it splashes.
We were foolish enough to think that from sin's ore
We could smelt gold for a ring which you would wear.
We would gladly regress millions of years could our lips
Become a pearl-shelled cup from which your lover sips.
We would go back even to stone if we could trust
That sometime your mercy did turn us into singing dust.
Once we knew you, could see you ah! Love's glad day.
Now our eyelids feel the sting of seaspray.
IN DUST I SING, p. 2
1974 © Francis Brabazon