-- May Swenson
Beginning ended, this is how the end begins.
We wake in the other world, sky inside our eyelid.
Lens swivelled inward, the sea's volcanic vents
leach into the brain. Here is self's jungle ajar.
Waterfall that sliced a mountain's
loaf in half flattens to a lake. A trickle of gems
from a pomegranate's cave is a red bedspread
where, black and white, the Swancat floats.
A chessboard on an iceflow, slow, swirls by.
The King and Queen arrive with retinue. And now,
small as pills, balls yellow and blue, chock through
white wickets over squares shaved velvet green.
The day is perfect. There is only one. It lasts
a thousand years. Years are thinnest pages
in a book, vast as a continent, heavy, sunk in sand.
At sunset, the end began, brain's
forest roars up into flame. Cool skull, a moon
releases, tumbles onto the marble table of night,
rolls over the edge.