The Big Sky we all inherited
glows in the subway light.
Glimpsed through the Reflector-
Net (right thro’ the Western Gate).
Like rays focused on a beam
in Apollinaire’s eye,
mass merged in energy
enough to die – you joined the stream
of unknown soldiers (Harry Poilu,
Joe Middleman) fusing
with bronze sea-gong
(tall, serpentine). It boomed for you.
A copper coin, at the bottom of a well
with Choctaw profile, Roman
grin. The cube of Everyman
only squint of salt – a dry seashell.
Roger the Seeker seeks his soul
in that upper air (a wind
so free). Love pinned
him to the still-life door – oak bole
of union, preternatural;
a chrysos-oil in old
dry woods (cold
boughs, so late-imperial).
Gold thread, gold hair. Apollinaire
smokes his last Calumet.
Salt breeze, dockyard, fishnet.
Doves in grey clouds disappear.