tied together with wire and frame
somehow I remember how you held
your proud head, heavily antlered
staring out across the marsh
until the quick pain of a barb
brought a fortnight of trailed legged limping,
slowing with the pain becoming worse,
until the shattering flint
decimated your ribs,
and the axe hit
severing the life of a left fore leg.
I do not know how you escaped
but I know you tasted marsh,
knees buckling to the wet embrace
of a shallow pool.
Your collapse lay still,
buried beneath peat beneath
the floorboards of the Fylde
until excavation and discovery.
Your skeletal remains, reconstructed
like a history, slightly gruff
with an acidulous eye rolling
took on character,
and the name of Horace.
*Horace, the Poulton Elk is 12,500 years old. His remains were discovered beneath the floor boards of a house in Poulton-le-Fylde in the 1970’s. He is currently on display in the Harris Museum.