Tuesday, April 5, 2011

carla funk: psalm of thirst (part one)

The sun like a burning eye stares
until the river shrivels into lines
and all that remains of the rainy season
is a watering hole sludged with elephant dung
the air a banner of gnats and tsetse flies

as the deer longs for water
so much more the creatures of this place
who bear the blueprint of thirst
in their bone-dry bellies

in this open throat of dry land
the island blends into the plain
and grown pelicans nesting there
begin to leave in search of water
while the young flightless ones left behind
walk over the cracked clay for days
until their charcoal bodies give out
fleck the baked landscape
in small feathered heaps

Funk, Carla. "Psalm of Thirst" Introductions: Poets Present Poets. Markham: Fitzhenry & Whiteside, 2001.