On a Different Day
Iain Haley Pollock
ON A DIFFERENT DAY
On a different day, I’d see
the cormorants resting on these pilings
as sign of the once and future ruin
surrounding me always.
I take joy in the ebb and flow
that I both know and cannot know:
cormorants perch where earlier
a woman wanting to know the rhythm
of tidal water launched her rowboat
into Manursing Lake.
day, perhaps this water will rise over
the trail and no one will stand
where I stand now.
just some life become other life.
the sodden wood of a ruined dock wastes
more away and a quartet of cormorants
scans the reeds in the nearby salt marsh.
And the saline air calms my lungs.
And the high-tide Sound lambasting
the rock-strewn shore on the Point
behind me seems an abstract rumble.
And, for today, I want
no more purpose