Unknown | 1/15/2016 |

Japanese Destroyer

Locked in ice at Fells Point
The destroyer idled
Indignant of its port
Sat unmoved as passing children
Pelted it with snowballs shouting
Look at the Japs!
Like bonsai gardens stand at attention
Through Kyoto snowstorms
They stand at their posts
With wet faces
Not far from them
Is heard the gentle throb
Of warm diesels held on cold tracks
Below them the scratch of gulls dancing
As the ice cracks.

The Charter

Then each hour
Is like every little bone breaking
In the wildly thrashing tuna
Thrown to the bait deck
Those who chartered
Shouting and dodging
The pilot clubbing and missing
Smashing styrofoam coolers
Of exploding beer cans.

Then each day
Is like the forgotten uproar
At the pier, the last call
For those drinking and smoking
And laughing and screaming.


Came up from the tops of submerged peaks
To look at tumultuous lands, the drowned
To see desert that is not dry
Where the sun does not live and does not die
And living things here move
Like the wringing of hands.

Came down from the tops of thunderheads
Blue in the face, the breathless
Into the thick air of their birth
Looking for fire that does not flicker
Does not burn up, does not burn out
Like the iron churning in the earth.



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