O let his stone frown roll
Applaud the silvery horse’s scuttle
Forget where granite hooves dwell-
It’s decreed, friends, ancient sorrows shan’t tell!

Forget a fallen slandered father?
What scary idle sings the dead man our children?
Besiege the bewhiskered one blushing for us-
Our grim story-teller too not like us?

It’s amnesiacs down the obedient horsemen
As memories into tiny tumblers fall!
Idiotic smiles shade his sedimentary sword
And they can’t even mimic the dead bronze lord!

O one mouthing crowd disputes the gray fragments
Another bashes the stately old street;
Yet where else to glimpse centuries blow past
As life buzzes on so sweet?

Mark Mantel

Mark Mantel is a lawyer and writer living in Richmond, Virginia. He was born in St. Petersburg, Russia and came to the South as a boy. He soon found the old Southern tradition a genuine continuation of that lost European culture, in the best sense, which had been based on loyalty and faith. His articles often appear in the Salisbury Review over in England. Besides poetry is he interested in Byzantine Christian thought.

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