The Heart’s Enclosure

Stephen Oliver

My lines populate many more pages,
as unpeopled now as recorded long ago.

I remain true to that predicament—
a National Census would bear this out.

Laughter runs sparse upon the moors.

Tracking down into the heart’s murmuring,
through the years’ undergrowth

I quest to locate the fabled surveyor’s peg.

The vista falls some distance ahead,
(as anticipated) a perspective that says:

                  “All Dimensions Reduced.”

Whatever it was I sought there—
bought and sold a hundred times over.

No witness stepped forward nor confirmed
such information ever came my way.

The locals had either moved on
or reacted with an indifference to inquiry.

A riot of tangleweed and blackberry.

Something slips through ditchwater like
                    an escaped childhood.

Mystery Avenue sold off into uniform blocks
several relationships ago.

Belief Boulevard hangs as a draughtsman’s
impression on a twilight wall in a distant township.

                    A southern province

historically renowned for its granite architecture,
and the quality of its wrought iron balcony work.

Adventure like youth is something best left behind.