We find a path here, twisting
our steps round features
such as clumps of fern, outcrops of
hard, grey rock, small pools of
brackish water clogged with weed.
Sometimes the path detours around
a patch of level, clear, and
ordinary ground - whoever made
it maybe had a different notion of
what constitutes an obstacle.
There are sounds: some of them
suggest intention (songs or
twitterings of birds, the grunts of
unknown creatures rooting in the
undergrowth), some not
(the creak of branches in the wind,
the various tunes of water
falling, flowing, finding its
And our noses pick out herbs,
the scents of flowers, decaying
vegetation, or the reek
of days-dead corpses.
If we're not clear as to our destination,
neither is the path we tread; the
landscape changes, varying with soil,
with climate, altitude,
and human occupation.
We come upon a city, giant
buildings housing creatures little
smaller, gazes fixed above our heads;
their conversations hint at things that
seem familiar, but are just beyond
our grasp. Yet here we feel
a certain safety wandering among
them, making strangeness less alarming.
We pass them by, but carry with us
something of a sense of purpose,
though we cannot pin it down.
And sooner than we had expected,
our remembrance dims;
what was it like, to walk among
those people? Some of us, perhaps,
have clearer recollections,
but they cannot pass them on.
We press ahead. We think the path is
little changed, but can't compare -
we try, but can't look back.