Ian Sowton reads Dry Bone Valley

Dry-Bone Valley

It’s like trying to stay upright,
scorched and breathless, in the blast
of some sneezing rot-toothed dragon.

This guided tour, God, is tough going.
As vistas go, it’s in questionable taste–hills
bare-ribbed and drought-dried to the bone;

Satan plays Lego with Rwandan skeletons,
chews over the remains of hope in Darfur
and a thousand other slums:

such pornography of desolation–
O God, can these bones live?
how have we been brought to this?

We wait on you.  Do not press REWIND,
returning things to the good old days
that never were.  Plant something new

in us, reassemble the strewn backbones
of our resolve, breathe prophecy into us
so that blade by blade, tuft by tuft

we may animate these Lenten slopes
with living green of Easter hopes.

Dry-Bone Valley (Ezekiel 37:1-14) by Ian Sowton from The Stink of Experience