When Hobo finds himself in rehab (a kind of harbor,
built on hardy cross-braced beams of honeycomb-
light) he makes a marvelous recovery, some-
how : harbinger of things to come. His neighbor
in the adjoining cave (one Lazarus, a gardener
from Lazicum) has seen it all before
but every time he wonders all the more. He
taps a whisper through the wall ‒ Did you see her,
Hobo? She saw you. Who? Madeleine,
your steadfast friend. Came each day, to wait
& watch beside your bed. Maybe you’ll celebrate
Thanksgiving with her after all. Thanks, cave-man,
mumbles Hobo (to his wall of stone). I’m still
in fragile health, he thinks (132 ailments just
now under his belt) yet healed I am, trust
me. Am hale & whole... one life left to fulfill.
The hospital (St. Magdalene) was planted in a park
one sabbath-day, once long ago (the specific date
no one remembers). From his bed, the late
reprobate looks out the window, tracing the arc
of a swallow’s flight : a bird built for the sky,
he thinks, as I was shaped for the clay.
Soon enough it will be Memorial Day...
he sinks toward sleep again. Never to die,
never to die... he watches his mother whittle
a baby boat for little Frisbee the leprechaun, &
letter its name on the bow (Sophie). Someone
will find it, she says to him - someone very far...