Issue 81, Fall 1981
Entering The Kingdom Of The Moray Eel
There is no mystery in it so far
As I can see here.
Now the sun has gone down
Some little globules of mauve and beige still cling
Among coconuts and mangoes along the shore.
Over my right shoulder I glimpse a quick light.
I can believe in the moon stirring
Behind the hill at my back.
Before me, this small bay,
A beginning of the kingdom.
Opens its own half-moon.
Nearly naked, now,
I move in up to my knees.
Beneath the surface two shadows
Seem to move. But I know
They do not move.
They are only two small reefs of coral.
Some time this evening the moray eel will wake up
And swim from one reef to the other.
For now, this pathway of sand under water
Shines clear to me. I lift up my feet
And let the earth shift for itself.
Vicious, cold-blooded among his night branches.
The moray eel lets me
Shift for myself.
He is not going to visit his palaces
In my sight, he is not going to dance
Attention on the brief amazement of my life.
He is not going to surrender the splendid shadow
Of his throne. Not for my sake. Not even
To kill me.