Conditions of Living

by Adam Horovitz

Conditions of Living

Once, we died dreaming and drowning

in the first flush of youth

our bones yellowing beneath our skins.

We died standing up,

propped on our spears


watching the world subsume us

in a winding cloth of sand.

We fell with our cattle and our crops

when winter swallowed us

like nightmares in a dream of sun. 


Now, we are always in the light

but still we're fearful.

The world spins faster. We see atoms

dancing in our minds and slow our ageing,

hide behind our mobile phones


check our profiles

in the darkened mirrors of the web.

We do not recognise ourselves.

Instinct is caged in ancient bodies

which in their turn are caged in metal.


The land grows meat instead of trees

and all the world's a stage that hates its players

who strut and forget

that they are only scuffed knuckles

on a fist of rock.

© Adam Horovitz