New Tower

Walking my usual track today with my buzzing golden meadow on one hand and on the other hand my dim and muffled wood paved with last year’s leaves and with elder branches ripened to mould, while between me and that stillness is the waving green margin of the wood, the row of maples so much alike that only one who always walks this way knows them apart, I look ahead between wood and meadow, glance up and see, reluctantly, you, dark Tower, looming into a segment of my clean bright sky where lately the hawk floated.

You are in the sky but are not of the sky, you are colonizing from earth, you rear up out of earth but are not volcanic with your sawtooth-segmented body plan, arrant Tower, steel your skeleton but people your sap or blood, you are of metal and of protoplasm compounded: a cyborg saprophyte or megalic cyborg myxomycote, a clanking symbiont led upward into the violated air by your two waving cilia, construction cranes: I will not deny, Tower, that you are alive, but do not you try to deny that you are dead.

And though you vaunt yourself as expanding our world for us housing us for a hundred years, poor Tower, it is not so, and should you surround yourself with ten more like you it would that much less be so, for in a hundred years there will be fewer of us and what will we want with you then? Unlike my maples who have before them an after-old age a life after life transfigured to living mould, you will grow into no honour, only needlessness: my great-great-grandchildren may hardly have occasion to inter you with dignity befitting your hubris now. Skeleton thou art, to skeleton returnest.

I hope, vain Tower, the hawk will come to nest in your laid-bare sixtieth storey and will not be bothered by snakes there, and will live long and well hunting the rats who come into tenancy of your commercial space on lower floors. But there is no consolation in this, no harmony, no history.

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