As if a god had crushed the firmament
Into a glittering ball,
Then spread the chart as a portent,
Heaven is in chaos. Let the prophet
Go blind, he will shed no light on it.
The fishermen weigh anchor, speed
Against the gullsí cry to beware;
The milkmaid sleepwalks to the barn,
The condemned man goes to the chair,
Under a moonless, cold, anarchic sky.
The old messenger has his directions
To warn us of gales at sea,
Rape in the hay, the freak accidents
Of birth and death, faithfully
To bear the valid letter of reprieve.
But time has overtaken him in his course.
His eyelids are heavy with the grief
Of so much failure, so many miles.
Hours away the day dawns on catastrophes
While he sleeps under a crinkled map of stars.
Per Contra Spring 2007