Leaving Indian Caves, Montana

Let’s have a final smoke in honor of this place
And of the beauty that it shows despite the world’s disgrace,
And of the sanctity of life despite its sore abuse,
And of the timelessness of time, the anguish of its use.
Let’s cast a final look of love about the yellowed rims
Where from the sharp and timbered draws the daylight softly skims
Where silent in the deeper grass the burnished antelope
Graze like sage and boulders across a tawny slope.
Time has stolen life from us although life perseveres;
We fall away like waves of stone eroded by our years.
And when each stone has vanished, and as the cliff recedes,
Nothing marks its former place, the absence that it feeds.
Our skin – is it the air? Our soles the grass?
Truly is the earth our heart, as from the earth we pass?
© Mike Bond 2012
First published in Montana Poetry Journal