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Stories, Poems and Humor
Left Book Hunger Hill
by Burton, Emily
Right Book

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Group: Poetry
Language: English



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They'll be rolling out of the Shoulder now
Loud and boisterous through the village
And up the steep of Hunger Hill.
Puffing and groaning up they'll climb
Their banter stilled by beating breath
Until they reach the lonely pine
And look, to see no view
But lights on Earth and stars in heaven

There'll be a heady panting pause
A space to think what time it is
As headlights snake towards the village
Obeying the call of distant bells
For faithful, constant worshippers
And those who kneel but once a year

The distant town is calling too
With muffled chimes and sodium light
Where weary mums and hapless dads
Prepare to make the final push
Extracting gifts from secret places
Their kids have known for many weeks
Stuffing socks with bits and pieces
Apple, orange, golden coins

And high above the light pollution
They'll see a wonderment of stars
And point to those known since a child
Aquarius, the bear, the plough
The very stars that I see now
A soldier in a foreign land
Lying in its sterile sand
Wondering as I watch and wait
My finger clutching someone's fate
If any of them think of me
Their pal who joined the infantry
And finds himself on Christmas Eve
On guard instead of being on leave

In such a place on such a day
As I recall the scriptures say
A single star poured out its light
From heaven to mark the holy site
A new born baby in a stall
To make some meaning of it all
Spreading the word that God began
Yet failed to quell the greed of man
Ambition and the quest for power
That brings me here this midnight hour

Where is that star? I seek it still
Like my dear friends on Hunger Hill



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