No name for those steps I sat on,
where the sun sings through the leaves,
where the old stone is painted and marked
by pilgrims who give what they have,
words, marks, symbols. I used
my little knife, carved a crude
tetrahedron, its sides not as equal
as I wanted, to say I’d be back
Did my tears drip onto the dust?
I photographed my feet to prove
to myself that I’d stood there —
as if it isn’t burnt into my memory,
as if it isn’t in the screensaver of my head,
as if it wouldn’t always be there waiting,
my symbol weathering with the rest.
As if the newsfeed would never tell me
that the steps and walkway may be removed.
I guess all us pilgrims are causing a problem,
hiding in there, making noises at night,
tossing things over the walls,
stalking by the graffitied doors,
scritching with little knives,
worrying the children and gardeners
and the dogs.
But… so many of the places are going
in the name of now.
Where will we say our words?
The notes and beats and lines
are stored in my head.
The keepers might say I should need
nothing more. And the sites
are theirs to destroy, theirs
to replace. But I have breathed
those places so imaged on the Net. I have sat
on the dusty bench and got the actual mud
on the cuffs of my jeans, in the treads
of my boots.
Theirs to destroy.
Dare I ask?