The Footprints of Our Ancestors



The footprints of our ancestors

Familiar as our own faces

Remote as fossils

Written on clay

And washed away

Over and over

Over and over

– writing on a Peddars Way Songline Stone sculpture by Tom Perkins


On this day

the 11th of November

at 11 O’clock

1 + 1 minutes of silence

were observed

to commemorate Armistice Day

On this day

I walked 8 miles

along a trail

which was strewn with the relics

of our ancestors

an old disused railway

once thriving now dismantled

the cornerstone of a cottage

someone’s home

no longer

made of clay which the earth has reclaimed over time

following footprints in mud

to observe

a very different kind of silence

that of nature

far from the madding crowd


for a moment

gave the impression

of a world without humans

and all their modern noise

returning from this walk

my ears were assaulted by the sound of traffic

it seemed intense


it is a noise which I barely notice

on days other than today




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