Clayton Stephens

sediment is gathering – as it always has

on my face, forearm and gut

I am used to quickly brushing it away

when morning light catches it

but I can’t be bothered to anymore


out of energy, or care - I shrug

this is how the trilobites were buried – surely

not a sudden massive event - but

one slow sheathing at a time


I’ll settle in for this –

preserved under layers and layers

leaving just the bones of what I looked like

at this time in my life


perhaps in the distant future 

some young person will take the time to excavate me

and see past the cracks and jagged bones

will imagine what I would have looked like, once

how I would have behaved with the other dinosaurs

some textbooks depict t–rexes with vibrant colours and fur

what picture will they project

from the arrangement of my skeleton


I’ll be lucky if I’m unearthed at all

lost under the layers

gray and stony

walking circles in the mall

sitting on a park bench

drinking coffee in silence

just another fossil in our midst

Clayton Stephens is an elementary teacher/artist living and working in Surrey, British Columbia. He strives daily to encourage his students to express themselves through creative writing and the arts. He does so himself too, daily posting poems and drawings through social media. Clayton aims to capture daily life moments and thoughts as snapshots in his writing. Clayton is new to the poetry scene, and is actively engaging in local poetry events. In November, Clayton won honourable mention at the Poets Corner open mic contest in Vancouver.