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Caliban to the Lovers


ISSUE:  Fall 2005

 

When our falsehoods are divided,
What we shall become,
One evaporating sigh

—W. H. Auden


Prospero writes that daylight isn’t moonshine, there in Milan.
          In coastal Florida
the light is constant; here duration is key, and bearing.
          I clock the distances,
run widdershins to his deasil, since my timekeep isn’t death,
          just lanky memory
cruising the beach in spandex briefs. It’s Ariel’s element,
          this insubstantial surf
of holiday-goers and retirees, where every shifting sandlot
          is an island, deserted.
We are always stranded, loves. Your father would agree.
          Even Milan, so far
from Naples, must seem the bleak horizon-line of castaways:
          I’ll learn the properties
of light, the ones forsaken by my books, till death stumps in.
          The master’s servitude …
This sun beats everlastingly. You write that love is bondage?
          Sweet children, don’t complain.

 

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