The ship’s dark shape drifts slowly toward the sun,
whose flaming sphere floats briefly on the sea;
Elena’s face, which he’ll no longer see
invades his thoughts: his suffering’s begun.
Impossible, that she and he are done!
Yet as the ship turns dot there’s no more “we,”
and once it vanishes their history
is boundaried in the past, like time undone,
as hard to cling to as the pink twilight,
or salt veined breezes winging past the shore.
The sun descends; eternal victor night
engulfs the presence that he so adores.
No theorem will console him; it’s his fate
to understand his heart an hour too late.
A Crow's Point of View
His morning walk reveals geometry
in how the sunlight angles through the trees
and intersects the mists that wreathe the pond;
a loud crow lectures oak leaves just beyond
his line of sight, on how a dappled breeze
confuses light. And yes, he must agree
that shadows lie, that rippling branches tease
false theorems from the axes of sun’s rays.
And yet, when air is still, the water gleams
with trapezoids and ellipses; sunbeams
seeming shining summaries of all the ways
to measure surfaces. Dangling oak leaves
and pond instruct him well in ray-seamed math:
his new academy, a woodland path.
Pythagoras remembers how he was
the warrior, Euphorbus, slain at Troy -
his bitterness, defeated, in the dust -
his darkly blooming blood, armor destroyed.
His foe Atreides so merciless
in Trojan pride, face venomous and sour
with battle lust, inflicting his torment,
devoid of mercy in the final hour.
But now his world is green, soft breezes lush:
he’s been a tree almost two hundred years.
Those fiendish memories drift into mist;
his only enemy is lightning here.
And sometimes he will dream, in still twilight,
of warriors embracing. Soothing sight.
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