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A shrunken figure lying on its side
in a posture of eternal sleep, dressed
and adorned, she was majestic in death
as when she was alive: a story-teller from
Asia Minor, a Mongoloid, she held
the key to all the myths and legends of her
tribe, a tongue to generations after.
                         The wooden coffin she was found
buried in the Altai, preserved the remnants
of her dignity in ice: a tall wooden head dress,
hand-made garmets of silk: intricate tatoos
on her withered flesh and composed feathers
being replaced by a hollow skull, she knew
in her wisdom what awaits the end and
brought with her disregard the manner
she would be found, her tomb desecrated and
held up to the world, as a discovery worth
noting, a hollow worth, like her skull of
lost secrets, a silence upon another, burying
deeper into my consciousness: a tragic silence
I've learned to speak from.
- Melvin Yeo