Fascinated fronds, we bend towards the guide,
curling around her facts.
Intellects, we process our research
and make notes.
Technical travellers, we film and phrase,
tourists, we sprint for souvenirs.
Weary people in a strange time zone,
we long for supper and sleep.
The archangel was chased away from every home
and came to our haven
with his unopened orders
and his smart dog George.
We were a corrective commune,
submissive like the doves we bred,
dipping our souls in balm and reform.
Guarding the pass,
we saw him come
his dog running in front,
the archangel stumbling.
He surprised us by being ordinary,
he disappointed us with his grief
making eternity seem a poor prize.
Poor old Barbara,
calling from the terrace
‘Come and join me – please.’
Even the café cats turn away
and we, selfishly,
ignore the precepts of kindness
use a bland excuse
and continue walking to the car.
Fifty metres on
we start to feel guilty
but it’s too late.
Then later, something white lying in the road,
an injured goat unable to stand.
We stop the car, at least we do that.
‘Kaput!’ says a passer-by