Pangaea

May 21, 2010

It’s evening. Isaac walks to the beach as if he’s lost.
He climbs through artificial dunes, through false ramparts
pushed hard against the ocean’s erosion—cliffs of sand.
So let’s call him Clement Cliff and let’s say that he’s
an actor and distant cousin of Montgomery Cliff—
that he’s a stage of sand, a progression of the beach.
Blind, he walks to the beach each evening now
because I make him walk. He hates the water’s soul.
He feels its fear. He goes because I make him go.
He does this now (we do this now), so I can walk;
walking, it seems, is very bio-mechanical.
So-bio, so-mechanical: the brain’s music.

We call this beach Pangaea, for it looks to be
a map of early earth; it looks a plan for earth cut by
the tides before the continents were torn
asunder. (My, how Biblical, my dear, ‘asunder’.)
It looks that way when I stand on the cliffs—
like lands formed in jest. I love the air up here.
I love it that these cliffs are not a place
for sacrifice or suicide. Jump and you will
take a tumble. Jack fell down and broke his crown
and Jill will land on the soft sand of Pangaea.
Pretending flight, they fall.  Don’t cry, honey. It’s just
a bruise. Give it a kiss. Isaac, he laughs.

It was right that he should die before me.
Every night we stand right here among the cliffs.
(Prominent among the bluffs.)
We watch and listen as the ocean sings.
The ocean is alive. Pangaea is where sun and sea
must meet. Pangaea, the sea, the soliloquy.
We go down to the sea in ships.
A thousand must set sail every day.
(All launched by your face, my dear.)
Tonight we sit and listen.
The ocean makes its music.
I leave on a singing ship.

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2 Responses to “Pangaea”

  1. extrasimile Says:

    ‘…delivered on tiptoes’
    My, this is going to go to my head. Thanks for the thought. To say it perfectly fits my intention is not to say enough. It fits an intention I didn’t know I had.

  2. S.L. Corsua Says:

    The emotive effect of this poem, on me, was delivered on tiptoes. 😉 By the time I got to the third stanza (after grinning hard at “My, how Biblical, my dear, ‘asunder’.”), I was already quiet and biting my lip.

    Pangaea, before the separation — the kind that left lasting marks of having ‘fit together.’ 🙂


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