Stephen Livesey Ashworth

The city built by millions of slaves,
Its golden roofs that dazzled every eye,
Its palaces and parks and private places,
Libraries and spires that touched the sky,
All this and more, one night, went up in flames,
Leaving only dust and ash nearby.

The once majestic oceanic liner,
Fast and graceful cutting through the waves,
With silken quilted beds for every sailor,
And the latest navigational aids,
Has cracked its steel bottom underwater,
Plunged down to a muddy seafloor grave.

The fiery tailed soaring silver spacecraft,
Cruising, tranquil, high above the world,
Whose million horsepower rocket engines laughed
At gravity, and set the Moon their goal,
Has deviated from its orbit path
And fallen back to Earth out of control.

You have more life than all those urban arts,
You are more silky graceful than that ship.
I touched the stars more nearly than that spacecraft
When I felt caresses from your lips.
And yet our love has burned, and drowned, and blasted
Into unrecoverable bits.

17-18 July 2008