Wednesday, April 30, 2008

All done for now

Thank you for reading. Maybe I'll be back next year.


Great brown-black husk torn from the living,
it rests in deep water,
a palace for fishes. Robots or human hands
explore for all the bright spots,
the riches.

Out past the pier the child sees
water and sky, only sometimes the vista is
punctuated by a dark slant line or a blob,
like his crayon scribble
on the kitchen wall
a lifetime ago, when he was too young
for clearest vision.

The painter sits shoreside for hours
to capture the image.
Historians quibble.

No one alive remembers
why the ship sank.
The horns are long muted by water.
The survivors sleep in firmer beds.
To the drenched men who skidded down the deck
into death, it was the final page
of a sacred book. But it’s not
our disaster. No longer
a disaster.

The dumb-tongued wreck and its kin
carry no ghosts, unless our rabid dreams
put them there. The earth
fills them up, plants them in itself
like the trees they once were.
Now they are beauties,

objects of pleasure,
for plunder or
for picture.

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