Leave Me in the Light

When I die

don’t put me underground

cut down a giant oak

as they did

four thousand years ago

 

pull out the stump

drag it across the wide salt marsh

with honeysuckle ropes

upend it where the curlews call

 

lay me across its outstretched hand

under the sun, the moon

the turning stars

 

encircle me in

fifty trunks of oak

each split in two

fold a seamless skin of bark around my bier

 

leave me the smell of fresh cut wood

the shine of pale oak flesh

the sound of wind and tide

 

birds will clean my bones

midsummer‘s rising sun will

find me through the keyhole of the east

and when midwinter sunrise looks for me

I will be gone.

 

 

 

Seahenge on the Norfolk coast is a prehistoric monument built in the 21st century BC.

 

from  ‘Gifts’  published in  2014.

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