The Amesbury Archer was buried at Amesbury near Stonehenge
around 2300 BCE, about the time Stonehenge was being built.
Tooth enamel analysis suggests that he was born
in the Alps region of central Europe.
He was buried with the tools of an archer and metalworker.
Before Thomas Cook booked his first tour, before Jesus walked in Palestine or Roman soldiers tramped through the wilderness of Gaul, this man walked from Switzerland to England through a forest of beasts along the unnamed Rhine past an unknown Paris and crossed the waters. He trekked through the history of everything that has happened, across all the earth of not yet born and not yet buried bones to the great stone circle, new then and busy with its silent purpose, addressing the universe and ordering the spinning world. And there he stayed. Perhaps those stones were a sign to him that his trek was done and that this place was the place where he would be from. Here he lay down his bow and far from the mountains plied his metal shaping trade and fashioned himself a life. And we do not know much more, as we never do, except that he did that thing that we all do if the stones of our lives are aligned just right, which is, at the end to lie down and go with a few small possessions around us in a place that we have made to feel like home.
Paul Turley of Adelaide was born in Wales, mostly raised in Adelaide, and is now living here again after years in other places. He is currently studying for a Master of Philosophy degree through the Department of English and Creative Writing at the University of Adelaide.