The idling fingers of our lassive drift,
Endeavour to restate the discontent
Of minimal encounters - a grimace
A hand, a block of stone ... The years that went
to dogged balancing of each on each
(Triglyph and metope, tongue to slotted rift)
Scattered like armour on a blood-stained beach.
Lists were of course prepared, proportions found
And counterchecked - " So many thousand load
Of marble", " Such a curve, viewed from the ground,
Gives the effect of being straight" - amounts
Recalculated, notes transferred ... But still
Retracts in silence time's unfailing Once;
Before the cart-dust settled on the road,
The whirlwind breaks about the sacred hill.
Accept, examine, redetermine, hold -
Within the fractured pattern I can trace
Contorted shudders of reality.
Feel where the shadowed gridlines interlace,
Woven through dust-stained, water-melon streets,
Their sudden brief constraint; recall the old
Unvisioned fears ... The final memory
Shards into ashes and scatters all retreat.