Rochelle’s challenge this week is prompted by this intriguing photo. Set me thinking about the decline of things, and set me looking for a piece I wrote a few years ago, inspired by a trip to Sicily.
We see the broken stones of the past
remnants of power, now strewn on arid soil, faiths of centuries pass.
We stop to wonder at these fragments. Are we like them ?
Invisible roots reach deep into the red earth of our shared origins
Conquerors came — Phoenicians, Greeks, Goths, Arabs, Byzantines, Normans —
such flowering of artistry and power. Square tombs, huge temples, sacrificial altars,
mosaic story-boards alive with movement.
See how the conquerors became the conquered.
We yearn to belong
Boasting our supremacy
Then return to dust.
December 14, 2019 at 10:32 am
Here today, gone tomorrow. That’s life. A brilliant take on the prompt.
December 14, 2019 at 2:47 pm
I appreciate your comment Keith, most kind.
December 13, 2019 at 11:26 pm
I really enjoyed this, Francine. Man and his desire to be on top… there will always be another to come along and take over.
December 14, 2019 at 2:49 pm
So glad you enjoyed it Dale – isn’t history fascinating !
December 14, 2019 at 5:09 pm
It really is!
December 13, 2019 at 10:51 pm
Uh huh, and I can almost see where we are on the current regime’s trajectory….
December 14, 2019 at 2:55 pm
That’s a really interesting point, where are we in the cycle of events ?
December 14, 2019 at 10:01 pm
Each person sees it their own way. Where I see us being is close to the mad emperor fiddling while we burn.
December 13, 2019 at 3:11 pm
You have concisely told the story of the history of man. We leave grandiose monuments to prove we somehow made a difference.
December 13, 2019 at 7:19 pm
Good point Linda, I believe you are right. Thank you.
December 13, 2019 at 11:38 am
For me, the heart of your poem is the phrase “mosaic story-boards alive with movement.” All that activity you describe, whether great and grandiose like the temples and monuments, or small and intimate, it’s all ultimately the way we make sense of the lives we are living, our own personal story-boards.
December 13, 2019 at 7:26 pm
Thanks for your reflective comment Penny. I like your phrase ‘our own personal story boards’. I visited a Roman mosaic floor in Siciiy that depicted lively scenes of daily life, and that sparked the notion.
December 12, 2019 at 10:50 pm
Beautifully written and well stated.
December 14, 2019 at 2:41 pm
Thanks so much for your comment Rochelle. I’d just come back from Sicily and feeling inspired.
December 12, 2019 at 7:43 pm
Every generation relives the past – in different form. I loved the sentiments in this moment of reflective thought.
December 14, 2019 at 3:07 pm
Thank you James, I appreciate your comment.
December 12, 2019 at 12:45 pm
We’re born, we strive for greatness, we die and turn to dust. Yup!
December 14, 2019 at 3:15 pm
You’ve summed it up perfectly Ali.
December 11, 2019 at 9:02 pm
A nice bit of philosophical reflection.
December 14, 2019 at 3:22 pm
Thank you Ian – it was visiting Sicily that set me off.
December 11, 2019 at 8:48 pm
JIngs, you are a cynical lady.
December 14, 2019 at 3:29 pm
Thank you – cool is good.
December 11, 2019 at 8:01 pm
Lovely, thought provoking piece of writing.
Susan A Eames at
Travel, Fiction and Photos
December 14, 2019 at 3:36 pm
So pleased you liked the piece, Susan.
December 11, 2019 at 7:55 pm
Well said. Empire’s never last. They always crumble under the weight of their own ambitions.
December 14, 2019 at 3:41 pm
You put that very succinctly, thank you.
December 11, 2019 at 7:15 pm
And none are supreme. Only that some need to cling to that absurdity, because they need to feel better than others in order to feel acceptable to themselves. How sad.
Well done piece!
December 14, 2019 at 3:46 pm
Thanks for your thoughtful comment. Glad you liked it.
December 14, 2019 at 7:01 pm
I did! Thank you! 🙂
December 11, 2019 at 6:18 pm
I really like that reflection. It made me think of Sicily
December 14, 2019 at 3:51 pm
Thank you Neil, so glad you liked the piece.