Driving into the cut-out mountains
their steepness pushes them closer
as if the tops of much younger ranges crowded together.
We peer past each other’s heads and shoulders
as blue thresholds open to reveal
desiccated sides and ridges
weathered tors just high enough
to impede winter clouds.
We can hardly believe these sun-blasted screes
are those elusive slopes ahead
layered gates behind.
Stop. Get out of the car
wind through stunted trees
water where there is none
and up against as close as a tango
the mountain’s shattered stone the smell of stone
the sound of stone.
Their age is their beauty.
It attracts like iron.