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the immigrant

A poem written in 1975 to an Australian friend who came from the middle of the Northern Territory, to explain an English experience of a different landscape.

My spaces are those of cathedrals
growing from the earth, man made
Old like the earth but speaking of minds
sonorous with voices
lifting the spirit hight to a heaven of geometric beauty
And, beneath one's feet
thick foundations of age
vaults of dusty darkness
Tomes, mysteries of the dead
Acres of walls rising high
Avenues of columns, trees of man
whose dead leaves are fragile flags of battle
Man is old and ever present
close and warm in the dust of his death
in the spaces of his left behind makings
Not rocks of earth but rocks of man
monumental stones
Spaces from his mind, built for celestial journeys
How beautiful is the age man
rounded warm and constant
I have been, I will be, I am here
I am the foundations, soft dust, solid stone
but I soar like the vaulted ceilings
tracing the heavens with my mind

But, come now
come in from the outside
pass through the heavy doors
Bring flowers, fruits of the earth
and hear
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