these faint scratchings summon my ghost
two thousand years buried, recalled
from heaps of refuse like a trail of coins
(history’s map) to an underground stream

we try to comprehend dreams of glory
this timeless need ground to dust in empire’s outpost
turned again to mud (feet marching and marching)

tangles of wire and old box TVs are monuments to ambition
covering glimmer of our past in these swords and plowshares
engraved on slim scraps of wood and bones of ordinary lives


A cleave poem for my friend Merril, who I know has already read this article about a recent discovery of ancient Roman writing tablets in London.

14 thoughts on “Modern/Roman”

  1. Oh my! I love this so much! I did read the article, and thank you for thinking of me. I especially like the first stanza, each side and both sides together, summon my ghost and history’s map. Well done!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. It is something to consider…what we will leave behind to be discovered in some future millennium.
    The formatting disappeared in my reader, but looks OK when I go from there to the blog…(K)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. And I wonder how we will be interpreted by those things we leave behind. No less harshly than we deserve?
      Thank you for letting me know about the formatting. One of these days I will learn how to format things the way I like them on WordPress. Sometimes I just compromise in the interest of time and sanity. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I don’t understand the way WordPress formatting works myself. It always looks different in the reader than on the actual blog, and also different in other ways on a phone. I know they need to be programmed in a different way, and maybe the WordPress programmers don’t care that much. But my artistic sensibility is often offended! Etsy does that too…


  3. I had not heard about this article, so you know now you have me thinking about what this would be if it was a Paleolithic discovery. 🙂 So nicely pulled together. Love, love the ”tangles of wire and old box TVs are monuments to ambition” and so much else.

    Liked by 1 person

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