Chipped, chiseled rocks
And artifacts galore
Still flicker with the glory
That flashed 500 years before

On earth’s floor,
Like massive bones,
Broken stones
Ignore their decay
And implore us to remember
Civilization's university.

Temples, literature,
Recorded history, and art,
Precious spokes of light,
Dart through the night,
From 2,500 years ago,
From the white center,
From the bright, bedrock days
When to Athena
Socrates prayed
And asked,
“How should men live?”

Yesterday vibrant Greeks,
With their Acropolis-like voices,
Started an eruption, a Vesuvius,
And the world has never been the same.


© 2000 Allen Hackworth