The column slowly returns to the earth from which it came.
Curves and plump lips, a deep copper hue,
Stand in relief of the life and roads traveled.
Strength of one side supporting the weakened other.
Well-worn and oiled wood helps keep the column from
Sinking to its eternal rest.
Lenses of knowledge, only shimmer, only reflect,
And yet spark to glow every so often.
What will! What undying flame!
Try the winds as they may to extinguish,
Try the rains to drown and the dust to bury,
But the column only grows stronger as it curves –
Like an arch to support the greatness and vastness of creation.
The fire only burns more fierce in its little flame.
They came and went, and will come and go,
But she sings with the time, and only sighs
At the hubris of the burning needle without an ember
To give it substance and perseverance.
There comes no heat from the quick brightness of the needle,
It catches fire easily and burns bright for it is hollow –
It took no time to grow and see and become,
And so every spark sets it ablaze.
But that column of the ages stands, though catch fire it might,
Though it may burn from the inside and be left hollow and charred,
It still stands and sees and will not fall.
Only with time will it return to feed again the countless who will come after,
Just as she did those who came from her.
She has earned her name and her place –
And though we may pass her by with barely a glance,
But when we do pause and heat ourselves for a moment
On her ember, we do not forget,
And are forever transformed –
Forever loved if we receive her gift of
Deepened valleys around burning lenses,
And a gust from her oracle’s chamber.