Monday, November 22, 2021

Sunset over Lake Pontchartrain

The waves are florentined with gold,
small crests catching yellow fire
miles into the horizon
where the world rolls into the unknown.

But this death is not yet complete,
not established beyond hope, though thin,
that still expects time to stretch,
to elongate the crimson and orange
and whatever ministrations comprised the day.

All is not lost of the heroic,
of digging in gardens or dusting the bookcase
and all acts falling far short of the siege of Troy
since our battles are with the circadian clock
that sets itself according to the holiness of the ordinary.

Twilight has no real definition.
The day is clearly not over,
and yet death, by all accounts,
is close at hand.
What to believe?

I watch the sun roll into Pontchartrain
in my state of mystical suspension.
For a few beats of the heart
I can have it both ways,
and so I choose to breathe in deeply
and savor the primordial palette
while balancing resignation
in that lobe of the brain rooted in reality.
The left hand knows what the right is doing.

The tall pine trees behind me are silent,
and a few waves wash against the seawall.
My home towns are before me and behind me.
Red beans and a cold beer await.

This small ocean contains so much of my life,
and I realize I could live nowhere else
as I melt and become particle and wave,
darkness and light, cerulean blue and dying crimson.

I can see heaven,
though the water speaks clearly:
it is not my time to set sail
into those deeper colors
that roll the soul into a glorified copy of itself.

~William Hammett

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