"When you’re dead you’re done," sings Ray Charles,
so we rock and roll long after nightfall. We woke
seeking in the sweating grasses at dawn the rising
gods of the earth, and we cheered beautiful Apollo
when he slowed his chariot to give us longer days.
But the sun bowed in shadow, and the pallid moon
lowered its face. I’d like to spot a few immortals
myself, now my time has grown short, so much
to be done and still the music of the spheres
in my ears. Nature was a sour smell of seaweed
and dead fish belly-up in the canal, but then
the sweet fennel by the path, and the wild clouds
of roses. And the sea never stopped sweeping
the ocean floor of wreckage and unspent coinage.
Marvin Bell — “Variation on a Theme by Wordsworth”