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Lost City

Leah Stein is haunted by the ruins of a city in this haunting poem.

The undulating sands stretch out, 

a vast expanse, sweltering

under the gaze of the sun

as it burns its way across the sky,

dunes flowing like currents, 

tides on an endless sea 

the color of ground cumin,

of cinnamon.  


A wall reaches toward the sky

weathered and incomplete, broken. 

Columns stand alone,  

lonely sentinels from a forgotten time, 

swallowed by ever shifting sands

beside a courtyard full of chipped cobblestone 

and dusty mosaics, glass



The ground bears deep lines, 

like scars etched onto its skin, 

from building foundations

long since withered away, 

long since disappeared to 

the wind, 

to the unforgiving hand of time, 

the coarse brush of sand. 


Beside the broken wall,

between lonely columns,

in the dusty courtyard, 

between etched lines,

where footsteps once echoed

where voices swelled over cracked desert sands, 

and fires once blew smoke into starry skies,

There are only ghosts. 

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