Floating point

By | 1 November 2019

The first transgressions have always occurred
In vehicles. Voyages emit new laws of the wind
Clothed in stolen gold—the hero beyond tragedy
Stands on the shore having discovered nothing.
Shield islands—plumes of headland nodding nearer
Farther off breaking coastline vanishing patternless
Into the present. Long shadows of oarstrokes never
To strike the horizon which ever smiled the same
Sad smile of the hand that believes it can calculate
Distance in clear intervening space. Pacifist isle
That invented the very idea of geometry—
—the first diagram whose angles haven’t yet
Disentangled violence from sight. Flowering stone.
Fluorescent time.
Take this sea to be equal parts
Wedding march and funeral dirge. On days like this
It can feel as if the island vain in its entirety
Has ripped free in a storm of its moorings—
A postage stamp cut from its envelope to
Commemorate the astral transit from subatomic
Particle to the vast millimetres of microplastic
Oceans. Nothing for it but to drift like an
Anchor planted ceremoniously inland—and yet
What choice in the land where equations
Governing fluids are more fundamental than
Quantum mechanics. When the most critical rate
Limiting factors are the speed and silence at which
you can slip through water—ave maris—.

Must I make the same errors of modern legend—as
Crane took Copernicus to say—simply by sailing
in a new direction you could enlarge the world
As though official buildings reserved the right to be
Shot towers from which lead is cast into and
Becomes the abyss. The sun sank its bridge and
Came straight back—the stars lean closer to see
Watershed waterlevels that are enough to set
Driftwood alight. The pain that was my wrists
Deep in Antarctic ice I thought the glass stem
Of gorse rigged into burning twine. And even just
Unfurling my palm—to lay flat my second nature’s
Fist—for five minutes has become a stretch.
You wouldn’t believe what controlling umbrellas
In the wind has done for my strength. In ice floes
Of traffic—my car of the future fitted with a snorkel
Staring up the threads of rain like gun barrels.
All of us in the ocean’s wake pining for the most
Alienating path home as though every lighthouse
A monument to who you were
not there for.

This entry was posted in 93: PEACH and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

Related work:

Comments are closed.