Barbed wire lies coiled red with rust,
A discarded thorn-crown
at the foot of three silos,
flaked-white and solitary,
hammered into the scarred
red flesh of a new-ploughed field.
Hung with the shadow
of a eucalyptus tree,
they are a memory crystallised
out of the boiling cold sky;
out of a skull-shaped hill;
Out of a sullen afternoon at Golgotha.
I stand – I – Pilate watching;
Mary weeping her tears on to succulent-wet
blades of grass below the shadow,
beneath the central tower.
I stand – I – Pilate remembering:
my ghosts walking.
Gethsemene, a solarized memory,
gives up its spirits
to a eucalyptus wood.
A crow clenches tight to a branch,
shivering its helpless outrage
at this damp afternoon, redolent of Calvary,
and a distant line of trees
creeps down the skull-shaped hill,
a subdued and satisfied procession homeward.
And through the tangle of barbed wire
they leave behind them,
thrusts a single yellow cornflower.
At the foot of the central tower.