Poetry - Issue 06 | August 2009

Metamorphoses

by W.F.


Metamorphosis

“How time reverses
                  the proud in heart.
                  I now make verses
                  who aimed at art.”
                      -Cunningham


A southern freight goes by, three blocks away,
reminding me of how I once fled north
towards Kiruna, in the summer where
our sun, unhinged, remained. The Swedish air,
the minuscule trees, the elks, all seemed
unnatural. I could not sleep. I knew

the life I’d fled was waiting for me, and
my journey, worthless, ended there. Or on
an Irish ferry, something like my life
was lost: the wake behind me opened out
containing, in my memory, all I’d
experienced. It was not done with ease,

nor is examination of these tracks
a simple thing- they seem an ancient wound
sutured with ties, their pine grain weathered now.
Night dogs are barking, now the train’s gone by
the whistle’s fled across the wintered south
as if it’s signaled all it has to say.


About the author

W. F. Lantry fought fire in California, nearly caused an avalanche at Isola 2000, and woke up to reindeer outside Kiruna. He put up stiff resistance against Texas fire ants, and killed the largest rattlesnake that ever lived, with his garden spade, just west of Mobile Bay. But he never faced actual danger until he moved inside the beltway. And you thought you had it rough!

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