Upon battlefields of rainbows, and muscled mud

by Martin Shone

Lightning and thunder of our times
intimidates the sunshine of our times

Church bells gives birds reason to flee
as they shatter their songs of morning
and of mourning the bells peal for life

The birds return to claw the stone
and listen for the air within to settle
for the bell’s tremorings to cease
for the dust to give up its ghosts

The dead below have no such problems
for the clang is silent in their depths
for they have worm song and beetle ballad
to keep them company
to keep the traffic of belief away from their silent hearts

Whither their souls go
only they know
only they know as they leave
as they shake away the cold church air
to breathe in the atmosphere of their new lives
to listen to the births of their stars, of their beginnings

Upon battlefields of rainbows, and muscled mud
there exists such sorrows where birds prefer bells