As if made acrobatic as smoke
by a double ration of rum
and the rumor of Spanish gold below,
I board you, a veritable pirate
leaping into flame-stabbed blackness,
cutlass singing in one,
pistol ablaze in the other,
your delicate rigging parted,
while the wind lies abaft the beam
and the crazed sea plunges.
Back of the slaughterhouse,
Beethoven and the junkie
nod off without ever reading
the notorious memorandum
regarding the pain of others,
but the laughing policeman
is still one step behind,
sidetracked by a hole in my life
down which he peers
hoping to find gray seas
or the last true story I ever told.
The dancing master knows
which are the cruelest miles,
and if, before the frost,
I turn up missing, itís because,
around dusk, Iíve arrived elsewhere
in a small boat of great sorrows.
©2006 by Howard Good
Howard Good, a journalism professor at SUNY New Paltz, is the
author of the poetry chapbook Death of the Frog Prince (FootHills Publishing,
2004). His poems have appeared in numerous journals and ezines.