Poets’ Corner: Island Light


This light that walks on water could be mistaken

For a savior, for salvation

That can only come from naming unnamed things.

A place will be set at the table for the other

Ones still able to say, It is salt

And potassium that sings blood’s Kyries

In the caves and grottos of

Body’s mythology. You will see it as it comes to shore.

But in fact, the Island is a daughter

Made from whispers and the hum

Of sun and moon light on water, the lisps and whistles and roars

Of wind’s discovered form just before

It dies. In the stories, ghosts and lies

Of loved ones linger on the tongue

Like leaves soaked in a brine of sea

Turning from one shade to another

Shade of black. Their footprints lead away

From land’s solidity. Yet something beneath the skin

Remembers what mirrors forget and sings

After each sailor’s suffering with laughter

That refuses to regret the blue and green refractions

In the coruscating crystals of their eyes.

Is it a myth that this is paradise?

Lee H. McCormack has been resident of the dank and moldy primal forests of West Tisbury for 32 years. There are reports that he has been seen, usually from a great distance, through high-octane vision-magnifying devices.