What Was Left

In piles high, the gold of olden kings
And silver goblets set with polished jade;
Great iron gates and dainty wire-wrought things.
The cream and crest of all the Earth once made.

A sword of steel unmatched before or since:
Damascus wrought, the proof its patterned sheen.
A cut-quartz circlet fit to crown a prince,
With single, giant emerald glinting green.

The heady scent of spices stored in bulk
And clearest honey, in the rarest jars.
A bottled squid — formaldehyde-drenched hulk —
Its wall-set jar a window to the stars.

A treasure ark, on dying sunbeams hurled,
To bear the wonders of a finished world.