Sunday, December 31, 2006

The New Year

There is a boat on the river.
A spaceship, circling a sun.
We know this in the way of miracles,
in feeding ourselves dead diseases,
in believing germs are demons
too small to see. The boat is on the river
(without songs, no one singing
rowing songs anymore, not even
the children: in the end, even
skipping rhymes die, and hope with)
and we are standing on it, not two by two,
but huddled together, billions of us
crowding the boat, though someone says
from the back (there is one, always)
that the boat seems to get bigger,
though the river never does, yet it does
from uncertain angles. A drunken man
christens it Schrödinger's Boat.
And no one laughs.

The spaceship, too, with free journeys
around a star, wheeling through finity
like a children's toy: this is real.
This is true, here, now: but on it,
the people send out cries, radio smoke signals
to the heavens, to other worlds,
hoping someone is out there. Hoping
someone will help them.
Speaking stories about silicon skulls
and pyramids and vanishing people,
hunting down morals and killing the tale.
Hoping for salvation, because it is easy.
Hoping to be saved, not to save themselves.
The spaceship moves, slow, like the boat.

From a distance, it seems a UFO.
And even closer, a thing unidentified,
never given to form, just there.
Quiet. Waiting. Moving. Here.
From a distance, it could be a star sign,
part of a boat, but that is a story,
and too simple and too neat.
There is the world, and distances
growing between that words never bridge
and silence.

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