Roman feet once trod these ancient ways,
Nor have the passing years erased the mark;
And echoes of those wild tumultuous days
Yet drift about these walls, stone-hewn and stark.

Once Roman eyes gazed out at woods and fields,
And scanned the far horizons of the seas,
As firelight glinted on emblazoned shields
Or probed the prowling Cantii from the trees.

Firelight glowed across the darkened sea,
Flames to guide the toiling triremes
Bound for Londinium or Rutupiae,
With mastheads blinking out their answering gleams.

Perhaps this tower a signal message blazed
To muster Legions stationed on the coast,
When Iceni, in fierce vengeance, razed
Verulam, for Boadicea’s boast.

Perhaps Caractacus, enslaved in chains for Rome,
A victim of Brigante treachery,
Watched as the beacon-light, the last of home,
Flamed out a long farewell across the sea.

The flames have died; the walls have long been cold;
And vagrant winds dispersed the vestal embers;
Time engulfs the great names known of old,
But now, today, who cares and who remembers?


Remains of octagonal Lighthouse Tower,

tallest surviving Roman structure in Britain

More pieces by Namur King:



Parting 1940

Coal Patterns

Brick Horizons

Remembrance Day

To Be As One With God

Today has never been before

St. Paul's (London May 11th 1941)

Ode To A Snowdrop During Wartime

Thoughts on the Immutability of Matter

Ode to the Full Moon during an “Alert”, 1942

Ode to Goldie, the Golden Eagle on its 10th Day of Freedom


Decline & Fall of the Roman Empire Quote




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