The vaults of the sky arched overhead.
Beneath, men on scaffolding
tucked blocks of sandstone tight.
Once the keystone took its place
they hauled the wooden bolster free
and the stones stayed taut.
Pressure makes them motionless
even after two thousand years --
empire crumbled to dust, Iudaea
a forgotten name on mosaic maps.
Armies came and went, came
and went like the waves.
Today, tourists in Kelty hats
pose where chariots used to thunder.
The Slavic fishermen are gone,
their houses leveled and rebuilt.
Now a town on top of the ruins
of a town on top of the ruins.
A few kilometers away, lush green:
golfers stroll on manicured lawns.
Enough tension, nothing can shift
without bringing the whole place down.
Today's NaPoWriMo prompt invites the writing of poems featuring masonry. When I thought of stones and the laying thereof, I thought of how I'm drawn to photograph arches, and how very many of them I admired in my recent travels -- starting with the arch you see above, photographed on my first day after arrival. (If you're curious about those ruins, feel free to click through to my post about that day's journey: Walking in (ancient) Caesaria.)