The descent of man . . .

My brows are low, my body squat
and furry; heavy jaws I’ve got,
to crunch up leaves, crack open bones
and suck the marrow. I hurl stones
to stun my prey, then knock it dead
with rock or club, and smash its head.
I walk erect with bandy knees;
my great-grandfather lived in trees.

And now that fire burns in my hand,
I am the master of this land.


The Kill
The mammoth falls and quietly dies,
light fading slowly from his eyes.
His tusks were sharp, his heart was brave;
he sent two good men to the grave.
With song and dance we thank him for
his life. His meat we’ll smoke, and store
against the winter months. Tonight
our wives’ and children’s eyes are bright:
with spear and club and net and knife
we bring them food and warmth and life.