Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Two Octets from Sunday

willamette river octet
        for Colby


cold light growing to the southwest: cloud fabric
tearing; reflections emerge on black water

toward the bank—the cormorant’s fishing: each dive
radiates concentric circles as the head

goes under; how much light penetrates with its
beak’s jab—who can guess, as cloudbanks close again—

murky river with flotsam: the cormorant
breaks the surface with a fish sparkling like hope

◦    ◦    ◦

tilikum crossing octet

the bridge deck mirrored, dark shifting bow across
the striated current with its gulls & clouds—

plum-red streetcar pulls over the crest, glides east;
minutes later aqua streetcar west passes

pedestrians—all subdued as clematis
at my feet tumbling over arched red brambles—   

cables’ outlines slash the overcast, carry
immense curved weight, stark symmetry of what is

Jack Hayes
© 2016


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