On the Sea of Ice

What dank of ageless bell,

Hung from phantom rope

In the tide's cyclonic spell,

Drowns the wind beyond all hope;


What bay of hell at ocean's bend,

Its ghostly music turned to haze,

Ringing in the planet's end,

Haunts our flapping summer days;


What ancient worlds of flailing waves

Slide and improvise

With the tossing shipwrecks of our graves,

Whose vaguely human monsters rise


Like gargoyles on a roof,

Their cynic lips thrust out,

Mute, mistaken, and aloof,

Endlessly condemned to doubt


The dazzling phosphorescent shoal

Of the signing sea's black hole.


Red Lodge, Montana

July 29-30

August 3-4, 2012