The villagers did not unite
in outrage
but instead, they set about their days as usual,
posting letters, buying fruit, forming queues in the bank after lunchtime.

They said little
but within that little lay much;
little was a gated field in which something extraordinary was buried.

They held to their inner selves
resilient
in emergencies of projected light.

And yet,
over time, there happened a slow retreat from joyousness;
a packing away of the Emperor’s new clothes, for good.

Only the giant oaks would
live to remember imagination.