Look To Windward

Look To Windward (a carol for the margins)

Delusions of grandeur, a stiff blow to the heart
An old man in a high backed chair
He stares a thousand yards
As crowds flow over bridges
Towards the gates beyond
His hands won’t stop from shaking
This laying out of cards

It’s the fire lit at evening
That burns to dust in the hearth
It’s the mark you trace at our leaving
Says “we will be no part”

Is witness not approval?
A hand pressed on the scale
When all our checks and balances
Turned out to be for sale
When words are crossed on both sides
The pride before the fall
You’re pulling down the scaffold or
You’re building up the wall

It’s the fire lit at evening
That burns to dust in the hearth
It’s the mark you trace at our leaving
Says “we will be no part”
And you cross your chest every morning
For grace to guide your path
It’s the losses you’ll take
For a promise made years ago

The drowned Phoenician sailor
(A laying out of cards)
As if the deck’s not loaded
And every card not marked

It’s the fire lit at evening
That burns to dust in the hearth
It’s the mark you trace at our leaving
Says “we will be no part”
And you cross your chest every morning
For grace to guide your path
This carol for the margins:
“We will be no part”

© T Ashworth 2018