for Tran-Van-Tay (i.m. Joseph Duemer)

The pomegranates on white linen
loom like autumn leaves.
A red that fades, grieves...
yet glows out of its midnight background

blue.  Like a chokecherry, or
some other berry, man.
(another long-gone war).

We were on honeymoon, in Paris.
that dried-up sack
of seeds (maroon, vermilion).  Osiris –

will he climb out of the grave again?
The grave of gravity
(1132 ft/sec) – for me?
One catenary arc (trompette marine)

– one thread cut from the labyrinth
of frightened Minotaur
One Ariadne-clue, one length

of yarn, your sheepish hermitage;
C-magnet of the knot-
king’s smoking calumet –
curled fringe of Jonah’s whale-image.

Out of the sea, the rudder swam.
Rhode Island... oaken
wisdom’s perihelion.
Rose Nile, set sail for gentle Vietnam.


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