Like an elastic band, rubber ball, hot balata,
flexible, stretchable, kneadable into shapes
I adapt, and sat
with Tuaregs, Peulhs and Patatas
Sinese, Jampanese, Hindustanis,
Lebanese, Otavalos, Coronians,
I spoke, and sat, and ate
with Angles and Saxons and Huns,
with Canutes and Auvergnats,
more empathetic than the fingers of Rome;
(has anyone more empathetic come to us?)

My made-to-measure outfit completely hides
the eternal suit, backpack, hump, bakru.
A metronome, my feet follow andante
the designated path, rubato, quick-quick-slow.
The remnants of raging innocence, screeching discontent,
Must with kites and arrow and bow
be hidden in the hold below deck
for those who one day will discover the sunken ship,

But what if now
after all the life (con sordino) under the heavens,
you appear like a comet crescendo
like a fallen star;
can the ship ponderous with pox
and daily mussels
ever change course again?

by John Leefmans

Other poems of JOHN LEEFMANS (9)

Comments (3)

For anyone who has loved in a deeply romantic way this poem resonates. A truly beautiful poem by an incredible lyric poet.
I like the title, I think it means that death is just a pause that comes between life and new life. A beautiful poem.
this poem is 5 stars out of 5 good details good language *****