We seek a sign


I remember that tropic hummingbird
levitating in the garden
in Roger’s Providence –
over crimson bee-balm, sailing leeward

toward St. John’s (St. Elmo’s?) fire.
New World already old
when Williams left the fold
for New-Found Land – an Aztec empire,

blood-soaked under sparkling banners
Huitzilopochtli.  Sign
of bestial regression
(eaten by bad table manners).

We seek a sign, & lift it on a pole –
bow down, force others down
before fresh idols of frustration.
Teeth gnash, flesh burns, heads roll...

But it shall not be so with you,
spake Dov the Nazarene.
One sign alone is given
that lad Jonah, in his whale-canoe.

I recall the scene (Deserto Rosso).
Old guy, utterly grey,
cornered by jumbled array
of gray paint cans (cooped-up, coo-coo)...

We are all Seekers now, Roger.
Pacific island soul,
deep Ocean swell...
gray-green still humming (shepherd-seer).


Compass of Roger Williams (courtesy RI Historical Society)

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