On Top Of Mam Tor

path to Mam Tor summit

On Top Of Mam Tor

On top of Mam Tor

a trig point faces all the world,

east and west, south and north.

Above it turns the biggest sky

and the brightest days

and the darkest nights.

You can see so far,

you could see the end of your life.

A path from the summit

leads along the Great Ridge

to Back Tor and Lose Hill.

Around the summit curls

ditches and walls, a ring

of defences, protecting the Tor

to the east and west, the south and north

from all that could happen,

or be imagined,

in times long before history.

A small barrow, collapsed, like a limpet,

clings to the south of the Tor,

waiting to tell us more

of our own histories.

Below and east is a dead road.

It died when the Shivering Mountain

shook and killed it with its trembling.

The summit sits on a barrow,

a place made by people

when the idea of a people,

of belonging to a people,

was life and death.

It is all cobbled and covered now

to protect it from assault

by the feet of people.

There are always people.

In the early, early morning,

or the late, late night

it is possible to have the hill

to yourself.

Alone, you can sit and watch

the sunset

the sunrise

the stars

the skies

and wonder

who lived

who died

and how

and why

on top of Mam Tor.


Mam Tor

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