For Sue Vincent’s #writephoto. A different angle this week. Same story.
They stand on the rath, neither knowing what it is—tourists, here today, gone tomorrow. Gone in about half an hour. The guidebook calls it a ringfort and they’d been expecting something like the Alamo. It’s a disappointment so they watch the sunset instead, oblivious of the voices that whisper in the wind and the grass.
The fort, perched on a rocky promontory looks down on the lough on one side, the sea on the other, was destroyed more than eight hundred years ago. They can’t imagine eight hundred years and think cave men, not real people. The stones remember, and the rocks below where the defenders were thrown once their arms and legs were broken. The gulls echo their last cries.
She puts an arm around his neck and kisses his ear. “Do you think there was a restaurant in that village we passed?”
He nuzzles her neck. “I hope so. We’ll just have to keep on driving until we find one otherwise. I’m famished.”
They scramble down off the rath and make their way back to the road. The gulls call but they don’t hear. Below, waves break on rocks and the white of bones. After eight hundred years, only bones are left, though they were scarcely more than bone when they were alive. The siege. Nothing but rocks to eat. No fresh water. There had been no need for the brutality; they were already ghosts. The bones settle, let the waves rock them, listening to the songs of the seals, waiting for final oblivion.