Lighthouse Stands, for Now, Upon the Rocks


For Ann

Standing in a rented room on beach,
I look out through windows of my eyes,
Watch the lighthouse far out from rocky coast—
Two flashes of the strobe, then it stops to take a breath,
Steady beat that signals ships in fog,
“Beware, I stand upon a rock.
Keep my light upon your starboard bow,
So you’ll know exactly where you are….”

What is real is here and now….
The rest is memory or imagination and hardly matters,
Melting into lite insignificance against
Universe of what is clear and visible,
Yet can never defeat the larger sea….
Crashing as it does against the rocks,
Against this ancient lighthouse
Exhaling light, two beats, then it pauses,
Based on power and rhythm of the heart.

What is fact and what is fiction?
Who is more real?  Those who are now old
Or youth growing up to be
In time, eventually, turned to only memory—
Living as we do, in rented bodies and rented rooms….
Where do we draw the line
Between water and the land?
What is solid rock and what is silting sand?

Is there ever music without an underlying need?
No story completes itself, as phrases come and go….
Sad stories wash upon the beach on stormy night,
Driftwood in the early morning light,
Wood conjured into eerie shapes, so ludicrous,
Whether left alone to fate or transformed
By desire, by underlying need….
Working out the details, deciding where
To draw the line between the land and sea.
Night approaches as I stop to take a breath,
Two flashes, then a pause, then two flashes more.


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