(This poem is offered in response to the dVerse Poets' challenge to write something on the subject of change.)
Eternal things do not survive for long
for time does hold them all in flux.
The pyramids, the merely permanent, survive.
I wrote these lines
when I was six and ten -
the early years of World War II, a time
of great upheaval.
But not for me.
I longed for change.
Illness was a great, grey blanket
spreading itself across my life.
Quite literally, at times,
keeping me confined
indoors if not in bed.
My world had much in common with the pyramids.
Such changes as I saw
were not occasions for applause: on walks to school
a house that once had featured
in my games, a tree perhaps,
might well have disappeared
in last night's raid. And yet
my friends and I,
collecting shrapnel, went our way
into a world
whose essence had not changed.
Church was one salvation,
for there they spoke of change,
was part of their agenda.
The ritual, the Latin and the incense
were the earnest of a transformation
to a world and to a self
too sombre for my tastes.
Dreams were another.
Were the only other. Here
I watched the everyday
morph into something different:
mum's corner shop
with nothing on its shelves
and mum behind the counter
(which she never was)
was suddenly a reptile house,
the floor knee deep in croc's.
Today's other poem is here
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