This blog's poems are from my published poetry book Star Steeds and Other Dreams: The Collected Poems (CFZ Press: Bideford, 2009) and are © Dr Karl P.N. Shuker, 2009. Except for author-credited review purposes, it is strictly forbidden to reproduce any of these poems elsewhere, either in part or in entirety, by any means, without my written permission.

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Thursday 29 July 2010


No-one who has visited Stonehenge, as I first did a decade or so ago, can fail to be impressed by its aloof, stark grandeur, embodying a remote agelessness that effortlessly transcends the tedious minutiae of our modern-day world – hearkening back instead to an unimaginably distant time, yet quite conceivably lingering on, unblemished, long after we have vanished elsewhere, leaving behind a dead, desecrated planet to this ancient monument’s silent, eternal vigil.


Like a ring of empty windows
‘Neath the mirrors of the sky,
Draped in silhouettes of Silence
As the evening’s phantoms die

In the hush of newborn dawnings
From the clouds each hung in sleep,
While the moon sinks down to slumber
And the stars so softly weep.

But these pinnacles of Shadow
Notice not those tears of dew,
Theirs is Past alone – not Present –
From which long ago they grew

Changing ne’er, as if forgotten
By the sentinels of Time,
While the winds breathe murmured echoes
Like a stream of ghostly chimes

Through their empty arching doorways
To the meadows of the Past,
For their pagan ring of darkness
Seems forever more to last,

Like a cold, unending nimbus
Where the sun has never shone.
And their ancient chill still lingers
As their dismal forms stretch on

In a mesmerising circle,
Like a world removed from all,
While the years flit by, pale shadows
‘Neath their stony, rugged walls.

They have watched the silver starships
Glide away through silent Space,
Growing fainter every moment
Till they passed beyond their face.

And behind, a dying planet
Drew its last polluted breath
‘Neath a shroud of radiation
‘Ere it sank away to death.

Yet these sombre tombs of Silence
Lingered still though all had gone,
Penetrating through the darkness
As their forms stretched ever on.

They – alone – who could not crumble;
They – alone – who could not die;
Still persisting, silhouetted
‘Gainst a vacant, empty sky.

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