Past ancient trees where once the King’s hunt rode, Low sunshine filters through to forest paths Here fat geese paddle still and royal swans glide, Around a lake man-made two centuries past. Through freshly fallen leaves, crisp underfoot, Scampering squirrels scatter from my dogs. Through leaves not churned yet into muddy ruts By cycles, turning bridle paths to bogs. Undaunted by such amateur pursuit Rats slink through undergrowth; the water moves. Their squirrel cousins watch us from the trees. Beneath them, tracks of wheels instead of hooves. . Two centuries hence, will this place still be here? And will mankind survive to hold it dear?