By Maisie Loy
My toes sink into crumbling dirt.
The air tastes angry with
Lifeless smoke and seething embers.
Waiting for fires to be set ablaze.
Where there was once grass;
We have birthed stone
Where there was once ocean;
We have grown islands.
Long forgotten, is our fear of the dark
As we remould the very earth,
Scorching our legacy
Down to the very roots.
Terrified that we may be forgotten
We came and saw the land
Full of wild, tangled curls and curves;
And we tamed it to our will,
Breaking and bending
Strangled into straight lines
We came and forced
The rolling hills
To prostrate themselves
at the feet of iron giants
We came and silenced
The roaring of rivers,
Forcing sand down their throats
Till their whispers only haunt
The dreams of bygone deities.
I stand upon the crumbling earth
And see how we have enslaved it
Her tangled hair, now combed,
An iron foot pressing against her spine.
‘Conquest’ is one of the award-winning poems submitted for the NTUSU 30th Anniversary Writing Competition, organised by the Editorial Committee. To read the other entries, check out our website and the latest print issue of U-Insight!