Out on the high "bird islands," Ciboux and Hertford,
the razorbill auks and the silly-looking puffins all stand
with their backs to the mainland
in solemn, uneven lines along the cliff's brown grass-frayed edge,
while the few sheep pastured there go "Baaa, baaa."
(Sometimes, frightened by aeroplanes, they stampede
and fall over into the sea or onto the rocks.)
The silken water is weaving and weaving,
disappearing under the mist equally in all directions,
lifted and penetrated now and then
and the gulf enters the sea and so forth,
none of them emptying anything,
all of them carrying yesterday
forever on their white tipped backs,
all of them dragging forward tomorrow.
it is the great circulation
of the earth's body, like the blood
of the gods, this river in which the past
is always flowing. every water
is the same water coming round.
Written January 1718 in the Chiosk at Pera, overlooking Constantinople
Give me Great God (said I) a Little Farm
in Summer shady, & in Winter warm
where a cool spring gives birth to a clear brook
by Nature slideing down a mossy Rock
Not artfully in Leaden Pipes convey'd
Or greatly falling in a forc'd Cascade
Pure & unsully'd winding throu' ye Shade.
All bounteous Heaven has added to my Praier
a softer Climate and a purer Air.
And Ulysses answered, "King Alcinous, it is a good thing to hear a
bard with such a divine voice as this man has. There is nothing better
or more delightful than when a whole people make merry together,
with the guests sitting orderly to listen, while the table is loaded
with bread and meats, and the cup-bearer draws wine and fills his
cup for every man. This is indeed as fair a sight as a man can see.
Now, however, since you are inclined to ask the story of my sorrows,
and rekindle my own sad memories in respect of them, I do not know how
to begin, nor yet how to continue and conclude my tale, for the hand
of heaven has been laid heavily upon me.
IF you have revisited the town, thin Shade,
Whether to look upon your monument
(I wonder if the builder has been paid)
Or happier-thoughted when the day is spent
To drink of that salt breath out of the sea
When grey gulls flit about instead of men,
And the gaunt houses put on majesty:
Let these content you and be gone again;
For they are at their old tricks yet.
Running with the breeze
Gray cat and blue butterflies
Orange sunset skies
Zest meets curiosity
just to hear the ocean roar
drift far on the floral air
as time slips away
A cool cat is at the shore
An art or a sport
Some whisper a ‘crazy obsession’,
And like Golf where age won't cut short
At least our pastime won't lead to depression.
A hook and a line
Much patience, sun balms,
No rush when your world is sublime
With glistening waters and a horizon of wavering palms.
I loved the cool, blue-green seas, and was most at home on crystal water,
As earth, forever in the pale glow of a moon, looks fondly to its daughter.
I had always been a strong swimmer, for I'd learned at a very young age,
Like lights going out in the cities at night, so that history can turn a page.
I loved going to the beach in the summer, and I even had my own canoe,
As wind makes lace of the clouds at times, for lack of better things to do.
My friends and I had great times surfing, while feeling on top of the world,
An eighteen hour trip with two layovers
But when the mechanical wings finally breach the clouds
It's worth it
This land, however distant, is lush and green
Hills mark the skyline and square patches show the division of farms like a patchwork quilt
White dots speckle the ground and I never realized so many sheep existed
It's different here
I can drink despite only being eighteen
Buses and trains take me places I only knew cars to take me before
on the other shore
the waters are crystal green
unlike these so blue
sun sparkles rubies
and mauve birds sing on the wing
into plum tinged nights
on the other side
dark shadows dance in sunshine