Marci Rae Johnson: “Dunbar Castle, East Lothian, Scotland”


The sea is cold, relentless

in the way it takes apart the stone.

It’s dangerous to enter—the castle

best viewed from a distance:

through the lens of a camera,

from the green hill tangled

with flowers, wild in their ascent.

I may stumble as I climb

—my heart in fragments, still.

No one knows what might remain

after rock translates to sea—

& it’s only a matter of time

before the collapse is complete.

In my limited view I resist—

the phone’s eye, this small piece

of time I occupy—

though I know every defense

must eventually come down.

Marci Rae Johnson is a freelance writer and editor, and the poetry editor for The Cresset and for WordFarm press. Her poems appear or are forthcoming in Image, Christian Century, Main Street Rag, The Collagist, Rhino, Quiddity, Hobart, Redivider, Redactions, Louisville Review, and 32 Poems, among others. Her most recent book, Basic Disaster Supplies Kit, was published by Steel Toe Books in 2016.

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