Academic journal article Parnassus : Poetry in Review


Academic journal article Parnassus : Poetry in Review


Article excerpt

Lacking the patience and limitless godly eyes

to watch every tick of circumstance, every

budge of a molecule or two

that adds up to light rain, a rockslide,

Dutch elm disease, or a fertilized egg

and bright red hair like her great-grandmother's,

we can be surprised, again,

and call the surprise a "fluke": a word

for an accidentally good stroke with a billiard cue,

or the tail of a whale-especially a white one,

cleaving the sea with a sound to our puny ears

like a cataclysm, world derailed.

A minute's deviation from trusty asphalt,

and a red ant, copper glint in the sun,

is braced on the windy hood of a Buick

bearing it irrevocably from its home.

The Buick's driver, who always takes Market Street,

today for no special reason turns left on Mendenhall,

the very street where a red-haired kid

has no one to play with except a ball

named One-Sixteenth, her favorite number.

In the game of this afternoon,

One-Sixteenth, thrown a certain way, strikes

the slab of sidewalk tilted by roots

of an elm tree blighted and chopped down in the Sixties,

so the vectors of girl and ball intersect in the street. …

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