“You know,” Old Morris liked to say. “Island folk.”
And island folk, they look to the horizon,
“Out to the island,” they say.
Wistful, eyeing tide and wind.
No one asks what or why.
They just nod.
Islands are that way.
An island may rise up in a sudden, cataclysmic eruption
Others appear slowly, rising shadows emerging from the depths,
Buoyed up by unseen forces,
sprung from pressures deep below.
Some are formed by currents,
eroding bridges, carving away, setting apart a piece of the main,
others still are set aside, preserved by barriers;
walls of ice,
Tides rise and fall.
Bridges come and go.
born on rafts of wreckage
Flotsam adrift, wrest from home,
carried by waves and winds of chance to land.
Stranded upon these farther shores,
far from home,
empty-handed they make their way
step by step
until, coming full circle, rediscovered,
stranger eyes stranger.
I wonder about the island chains our age has spawned:
and all the scattered atolls
ringed by reefs of religious fervor and ideological sanctity.
What folk will come ashore in time?