A Diversion on the Road to the Dead Sea

We drove due east
past the concrete wall
by the older stones
which marked the fall

of carved out gods
honed by man’s cold sword
through the broken centre
of this confusing world

There restricted Jews
and Muslims had bled
under the scything prayers
of crusading men

Rose water was scrubbed
to reclaim the rock
to wash from the slabs
the foul tread of a god

When the Axa mosque burnt
in a war on the dome
a madness was found –
Jerusalem Syndrome

Hopes raise and implode
back to rubble and dust
Forty centuries of walls
have never been lost

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