Canadian Poetry Online top banner link to Canadian Poetry Online home page link to University of Toronto Libraries home page

Codicil

M. Travis Lane
From:   Keeping Afloat. Guernica, 2001.


     ("including the cost of a monument and inscription")

No monument. Let me be ash
thrown out to tide
among the rags and flotsam of the shore
and the severed beads of the bladderwrack.
Or drop from a dory a brown glass jar
weighted with sand for the barnacles
to reach their gritty fingers toward
and tumble in the oil-ooze of the flats.

The inscription: that foamy trace
when tide turns and the osprey from her perch
turns also, or,
where a salmon leaps, or where
the sleek unsaying surface hides a loon.
No epitaph. Even a stone
returns to the nest of processes.

As for the soul, nothing will hold or mark it but the same
impermanent elation, heart to heart, a word,
like a live fish in water, sometimes shows.



M. Travis Lane's works copyright © to the author.


Canadian Poetry Online bottom banner link to University of Toronto Libraries home page link to Digital Collections home page link to University of Toronto Library catalogue link to Canadian Poetry Online home page link to University of Toronto Libraries home page