Time Traveller

by Ellora Sutton

A Golden Shovel after ‘Ozymandias’ by Percy Bysshe Shelley

They have built things, these wrists, my
teeth and tongue, they howl my name
I hear it in the downpour, the glass is
rattled with it, a furious Ozymandias
gale-force. I choke on the word king
the wisteria forming my spinal cord isn’t of
bending bowing shade. I spit on kings.

I have done worse things. Look
unblinking, until your eyelashes drop, on
the crimes of my lungs, the sins of my
knuckles. I have read leather-bound works
from lost ancient greats, pages cancer ye-
llow and found their words not mighty
but vital like foot-worn paths and
bleeding soles. I have translated despair
from sunflower seeds and found nothing

nothing lasts. Stone weeps to sand beside
the stone fists of kings. Nothing remains.