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In The Cave

by Murray Shelmerdine

In the mouth of the cave
on a rock
sat a man
waiting for the rain to stop.
The rain dripped on
and didn’t stop for five thousand years.
Now he’s a stalagmite.

From the ceiling
in the centre of the cave
hangs a windchime
consisting of glass models
of Plato
the well-known Ancient Greek
There is no wind in the cave
so he’s silent.

In a pool of light
in a corner of the cave
a man with hatred in his eyes
and stones in his kidneys
sits in front of the camera
talking to himself
in the voice of God,
preaching death and devastation
and vengeance.

Deep inside the cave is a hole
filled with the bones of men
and animals,
all of whom
died violently.

On the back wall of the cave
in inner darkness
is a message from fifteen thousand years ago.
It says: “The deer is good
and so is the boar.
Here are some pictures of them,
the best I can do.
And here is a print of my little boy’s hand.
Happy holiday.

Outside the cave
it’s raining again.

© Murray Shelmerdine 2012

Murray’s first CD, Litanies, is available from the producers at Rrrants.com, and his second CD, Kids’ songs you may not have heard, is just out. He can be seen at weekends dressed as a pirate or a Jedi, running adventurous children’s parties in the woods.

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