Elwyn Dennis : Artist

A Measure of Civilisation

Brutes in the beginning
Bunched in anger and fear
Bite and bust.

Attack first enjoyed remove
A lump of wood away.

Stone attached;
Stick became handle.
Edge added.
And the length of a pole.

Bow yielded to firearm,
Each bettering butchery
To line of sight.

Swinging blades
Quickened to whirr.
Weapons wore wings.

Satellite, computer, missile
Damage over distance.

Splatters of killing need not soil
The screened warrior.

Modern screams are remote,
Stench on another curve of earth.

Flattering calibrations of culture flourish,
But none attract more invention.