This clay-born sunburnt stage put to the test
my broken love,     nativity     and grave
of nothingness:     of this you'll make a masque
of merry Yule     & deathly Mexico
earth mother jigsaw     jaguar     brooding husk
ascending darkness     from your subway rest
you make a somber harmony     slow
sunken ark:     a turtle's     phoenix nest

This lacerated miracle     & long drawn-out
debacle-spectacle     enacts
the buoyant coffin: serious     Ishmael's womb--
the dogwood splinter     green-eyed mote     &
drifting flotsam:     heaven's cataracts
poured out in tears     to give the New Year room



Poured out in tears to give the New Year room
--thus Hamlet leaps into the grave again
Laertes     in his mirror     will resume
shaving portentously     & lifts his heavy blade
of wood--     crisscross the boards
they make a brooding pistoll'd sign
& pass away     into the Danish gloom

& over the frostbound earth     now floats the rain
& sweeps away     Ophelia's memory
her crown of pennyroyal     soaked, unwoven,
soiled with her     submerged     anonymous clay

& on the evening of the shortest day
but one star gleams     faint     unproven
there     in broken-hearted     sailors' heaven

Henry Gould | Island Road 41 and 42
Contents | Mudlark No. 6