Tuesday, April 24, 2012

On the Waters

by Steve King
©  2012 
All rights reserved

The surface had been broken sudden,
ripples shake the sky to muddled gray,
mixing clouds with infinite azure—
clouds that seemed so bright before,
floating high upon a sea of light—
but not now in reflection,
not now, writhing on the fractured sheen;
The sun, bent to funhouse shapes,
a wandering balloon
set loose upon the world,
unencumbered child’s play
making light of all the day.

The certain picture gone,
hostage to the least of winds
that touch and go and leave no trace
or any true pathway.
The face upon the waters
puzzles now a dawning mystery:
eyes flash across each gathered wave,
changing with new currents,
now hiding in roiled shadow,
then glinting in that funhouse glare;
lips, fickling with each rise and fall,
first smile, then frown to bottom out the depths;
no Narcissus charm to beckon
from the spirit floating there,
countenance remote, delicate,
hanging just beyond an easy reach,
trapped within an ever-changing tide.

Watching for a certainty to settle of its own,
to hold a master vision once again,
an image, an idea that might stay,
knowing sure that all things seen
linger on their own thin edge,
ceding fragile form and gravity
to random ripples of unthought design
that shatter calm reflection,
spin still contemplation and regard
out of their sometime world.

These beauties that the image now betrays
are drifting peaceful on the deeper reservoir,
reflecting for an instant only on the broken shoal.
Such shadows may not be embraced,
nor should they even slip to light so much,
for all that gathers on the edge
is scattered as I stoop to see,
ruined on the muddled shore
as I do reach to lay a heavy touch.