Leviathans

One by one they stumble into view,
resolving from eternity or the static past,
whichever might seem closer at the time

shuffling into a light that is not light
but merely difference in perspective
through kaleidoscopic vistas

Each one momentous, harbinger or touchstone
silently aching to tell;
here they come, the coroners and suicides

the playwrights and magicians,
the murderers and child-brides,
empiricists and philosophes

all nameless now,
from the dark room where they sat
holding negatives to the barred windows

perhaps in retelling them
I come to understand what first moved me
down this lonely corridor

towards the light of someone else’s sun

(for Thom Gunn)

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