Magazine article Phi Kappa Phi Forum

The Great Reviser

Magazine article Phi Kappa Phi Forum

The Great Reviser

Article excerpt

I'm the Big Lake, mishigami,

The great reviser.

Along the shore each morning

There's a line of water-worn pebbles till

Hell won't have them:

Quartz and tiger-striped agate, blue chert

pretending to be agate,

Leland Blue Slag pretending to be

blue chert,

But often exposing itself with a hole

clear through.

Siderite masquerading as pebble,

With lightning patterns of calcite in

the cracks,

Petoskey Stones with their subtext of

fossilized coral cells,

Unakite with its streaks of green and pink,

Horn coral trumpeting at one end but

always making its point,

Like a Paleolithic sonnet,

Petrified wood, Charlevoix Stone with its

little Favositic eyes-

No, wait, I say, I meant it to be

Honeycomb Coral,

Or Stink Stone, cratered like an asteroid-

Moonstone-well, feldspar-not to be

confused with quartz,

A green and bubbly chunk of

Frankfurt slag,

Crinoids in necklacefuls of little rings,

And hosts of other fossils only scholars

can identify

As I throw them up from my

uncatalogued depths,

All along the Third Coast;

Multicolored pebbles, yes, real pebbles,

worn to smoothness

By rubbing around in the bottom of my

great pocket

Before I reduce them to grains of sand.

And beach glass: the various bottle browns

and greens,

Bud, Labatt's, Heineken, Newcastle,

Leinenkugel, they're all here,

But I transform their cliché into smooth

little opaque jewels. …

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