Swollen as they are and part of earth-time, the tusks,
femurs and molars — huddled together in fissures,
in long loams, in gravels well-pummelled — canticles
of enamel moving with the rivers that brought them,
grinding south and south, with the ice-blocks floating:
the auroras of winter canopied in their small brains,
the husks no doubt also of summer in their soft hides,
only we cannot see them, all that hugeness gone
greedily but without stain into the heavy tills —
the Gipping, the Chiltern, the Lowestoft drift:
tough, glutinous blanketings that the great bones
work in and founder, and are never released from.
For imponderably they are of this time and this place,
uncomfortable or diminishing as that may be,
in foundations, in parks, sites of industrial buildings:
square-faced and nondescript, rigorously planned.
As such these pantechnicons of the flood,
ruminating and then melting into the tundra,
may almost be part of our own plots of lives,
local as the weather in this late warm spell.