Leeward

They stripped the trees for fuel those men
For warmth against the whipping, sand-armed winds
Brine-filled, little could grow above a sapling
Yet still they cleared, cut, split
Oblivious to their future
Straight poles for the roof and rafters
Turf topped, thick walled, their beast lived with them
They traded in copper and tin along superhighways
Westward, today we feel remote
Galleys of the Med; longships from the north
Curragh to their cousins in Ennor, over vicious seas.
What of them today?
Their village, long abandoned, leaves only mysteries
The sea is higher now, the wind blows colder
Where they saw land, we see rocky stumps
Where they saw crops, we see gorse
Where they saw hills, we see tors
Where they saw woods, we see a single tree
Combed over, brushed across,
Stunted windward, flared leeward
Shaped by forces aeolian, clues to their passing

Leeward

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