Category Archives: Ocean

“So Easy to Feel”

“So Easy to Feel”

So easy to feel, to seem to be, to know at last propinquity
As if the light declares the coming glory of the sun at daybreak
Redundant. But as that disk cannot be seen for more than seconds, I take
That certainty of coming morning within me,
Knowing that midnight’s richest prize in ivory
Is forever fixed as is the station of the sun; the moon an intimate
In someone’s flight, perhaps, but even so, as she reveals herself in states
And phases never hers, agitation gains nothing in the motion save in memory
And affectations of the sea within me–force upon another force,
Measured consequence of a functionary that renders boundaries
Of continental pride and the ocean’s doors
Cast aside in the riot of the tides, a natural stampede, no more
Than thresholds of natural accident, the stream and river’s course
Now rising, now again a swelling to apostrophes, eternal inertia born of gravity.

“Pain”

“Pain”

Pain, and the Pacific has had its way, so many tears;
The summons; natural deities, rushing devotees of Southern waters
Join discords of the North and oceanic rivers feed because the glaciers falter.
Nai-no-Kami will no doubt dance. She needs not move far while fears
Of millions, fields and city gates are prey with every passing day.
We view their sighs and gestures, calmly watch and lunch on wonders
At the thought and misery that gorges on the plunder
Of laboured mountains duly noted while we dine. Mere screens relay
Our sympathies as surrogates before us mouth the news in bites, remote,
Confounding empathy of others with our own, and with no more thought
Than is required to vote or tolerate yet another tired announced affair
Convinced we’ve performed our sacred duties. Filtered sage suggestions float
Between commercials; who is dead, and who is dying?
We resign ourselves to daily schedules, and retreat
To mindless repetition, and support of yet another public brawl,
and trash what cannot be understood, change the channel and eat.

“That We Fall Is Natural”

“That We Fall Is Natural”

That we fall is natural; that we rise, elephantine.
The elemental flow of oceans cannot be
A thing so scripted in the stones nor greater than it seems,
But ever-striving, ever-writhing, natural peaks declining,
Irreconcilable in their conniving, twice and more desired falling
In or toward Themselves, the Mothers of all Waters, yes. Rivers
Die and are reborn at once–revivals in their streams and noted divers
Books, catalogued as tributaries and watersheds–calling
And recalling from a moonstruck swollen pinnacle
even to the least and last most holy drop.
Confucius* said it long ago that greatest glories
Come not so much in never falling, but in histories
Of revision, sublimes in tectonic prodigies at the mountaintop.
Little wonder save to mortals what the matter is;
energy is the bright selective gleam
Of noble souls who
like the stream, the river, the brook,
must at last rejoin the sea.

*Confucius B.C. 551-479

“So Much for Boiling”

“So Much for Boiling”

So much for boiling when all you’ve got is consommé,
The elements somehow loosed in energies retaining simple dreams of taste.
What choice remains in substance but salt and what might otherwise be waste,
The dregs, the missed but lucid memory of sustenance, and come what may,
The season and antidote to cynosures in broth, a sinister and momentary stall
Of versions of hopes and yearning, long;
The bottom line, the lyrics and the melody of the latest song.
These tides succeed and then recede, retaining all
The borders’ former ramparts in its wake—deposits, dross,
Perhaps from this or from the other shore.
No need to heed the warning of the tides
Nor shift in continental plates; the worship of the ides
Of any period are balanced in the ocean’s roar
While we live shiftless, listless in the lighter cusps
Of what once was and what this is while seeking, moving, touching
former mountains’ peaks reduced to nothing more than dust.

“The Greatest Sanctuary”

“The Greatest Sanctuary”

The greatest sanctuary saves, preserves, and seals
The last and latest treasure; final fears are entertained
And in the end repeat themselves penultimate in any age
That’s spent with nothing left to say. The morass of months reveal
Themselves as names, the briefer moments cast in isinglass,
And hung above the door as witness to emotions borrowed to defend
The journey of both giver and what it is that’s given–split ends
That pass at times for purity of desire. Consternation, then, at last
Effaced, those few peas remaining within the pod will spend
Themselves while outward bound to what is after all a dream
Or merely someone’s lunch. They groom together–the sheen
Is frayed–delay is shame when every effort to confirm or to renew offends.
Reconnoitred, what were formerly evergreens
disclose themselves as deciduous devotions
That decry their former riverbeds as puddles, watersheds of desiccated oceans
That long since disappeared. Yes, we’ve seen this rain before
and now we see it every day;
Umbrellas up, umbrellas down, yet these expose
Themselves as useless as the refugees keep running, hoping, close
To bolting at the slightest sign of teardrops in their pain.
And what is gained in either case, the with
Or the without? The question here is moot.
Is moisture poison to the man who values silks in suits,
Or to the woman bound to shake her fist
At every incident that renders hairspray a total waste?
But these are questions for the sophist’s notepad and fodder
For prevarication while what is relevant to the journey, a blotter
For veneers of life are disclaimers and discounts which so easily make haste
To negate what is evident in a common tin of oysters or a jar of lox:
The end of every one of us is six feet under in a box.

“What Cannot Cool”

“What Cannot Cool”

…the Japanese dilemma…

What cannot cool and wills it so is justice.
Love notwithstanding, volition’s stains
Whether long nor short are perennial, the certain gain
And loss, effusion and delusion of yet another solstice;
A cosmic second and another generation lost amid an armistice
Between the running ulcers of epochs that in the very quick of veins
Within the seas and continents bind mortal immortalities reducing rains
To harbingers of cancers from the rivers to the ocean floor: avarice
In nature is moot.
So much rests on that noble brow,

The cut of cheek to chin and back again, upward the temple
Blessed with grace and manifest declension of the rib
And thigh of Adam, though the eyes of life within the crib
Were opened before he rose, resigned to visions of the sacred cow
That cannot justify a mother’s milk: behold the man and tremble.

“Goliath”

“Goliath”

Goliath. Behemoth, yet my father’s eyes do not behold me.
Barren straits above the line of all my cisterns’ shores,
Are crystals, porous with litanies of creatures, future seas of worlds not born
Arraigned in prisms’ prisons to attract some feeble ray that only seems
To please the rhythms of the heart but never rule as I am warmed
By something undistilled and unrehearsed from memory; my advice
Is hoary white. Humoured as it is, it will suffice
To welcome both the fool and hardy in the undertow. I perform
What cannot be foresworn by an incident’s huddled worry on shores
Of continents and isthmuses where serried islands are but guests.


I might have ruled the whole but in the toss, the test
Of prophesies and fortunes were never kissed by either die.
I am content, it seems, to be and do no more
Than surfeit in the light of endless sapphires, blood to commerce,
Storehouse of the wealth of eons lost, to rise in glory and then disperse.