Frail Boat (Written August 25)

Frail Boat


It was probably the hammering of the temples,

Which became more and more pronounced

As we came within sight of the island.


The sun was directly overhead and the glare

Was unusually intense. It was like waking

From a dream. I would never have believed


That such a frail boat, packed to overflowing

With runaways, could weather such a sea.

The land rose out of the water like a huge loaf


Of petrified bread. On the wharf a crowd

Had gathered to greet us as we inched our way

Into harbor. Everything was larger than life.


A girl, perhaps twelve, perhaps fourteen,

Standing at the edge of the wharf, not cheering

Or calling out like the others, looked at me.


She had reddish gold hair, and features

As grave and austere as a caryatid.

What we were running from no longer


Mattered, in the closeness of the embrace

We received. I felt what the parched earth

Must feel after a sudden and furious downpour.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>