Requiem

9-1-07 029

Always, even before the mountains were born,

it was the sea that folded its dark soul

around algae bloom and plankton and embryonic

fishes, around ashen rain and shattered prisms of light,

and offered up its titanic floor as the resting place

of life. Consider that broken shell just washed ashore,

its barnacle covered walls torn from some reef, some shoal,

some rotted keel. I can still make out its once perfect

shape, its tiny spiral staircase winding to a sculpted peak,

and I raise it to my ear, hoping to hear the song

of waves beyond my reach, but in my hands

hold only voices—lost beneath the sea.

* * *

“Requiem” by Mary O’Connor, as published in Dreams of a Wingless Child, Wheatmark Press © 2007

Lighthouse painting, acrylic, Mary O’Connor © 2014


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