The woman beneath the hill of the world…

The woman beneath the hill of the world


They say the earth is a woman

Wrapped in a gossamer layer of

Brown-green skin

Runnelled and pooled by

Salt tears


They say the woman is barren, for her sterile

Soils are not fed from the falling leaves

Now the trees are long gone, and

The long tresses of her long green hair

Are stored as silage


They say the woman mourns for her children

Whose bones now brine the ocean, and

Whose dawn songs are no longer sung

Whose savannahs have all

Been stolen


They say that the woman speaks to mountains

But they no longer listen. That she

Looks for signs in the distant stars but their blink

Is blurred by the smoke from

Burning forests


They say the woman would write her story

Except that the black ink in her wells

Has all been pumped dry, and

The tail-feather-quills from her favourite flightless bird

Have been plucked


The woman has not gone away, they say

For she has nowhere else to go

No place beyond these fields for her

Nor grounds she could lay down

So beneath this hill she stays

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