Mudlark No. 51 (2013)

To Tell Us Why We’re Here

No elegy is only for one quarter of the earth. 
I’ve known another country where
the single man who spoke my language

was named Mr. Sorrows 
and had come to be there by shipwreck.
He explained to me why monkeys inhabit trees

and fish, the sea, how birds got feathers 
to rise from water but kept their webbed feet, 
why we live in memory 

and, when we leave a place, 
wings spread wide, we might think, 
our old ways are still folded between our toes, 

into our deepest furrows. 
He told tales of origin 
while his land was held apart from him 

by an ocean, an element 
no human body was made to enter
and from which we will not ascend.   

Rose McLarney | Exotica 
Contents | Mudlark No. 51 (2013)