Captive Water


Christina Springer

Captive Water

(during Katrina)
1.  Hampstead Heath
new coots
slice the water. 
I am thirsty.
my throat believes
hope is a quivering stag
at the edge of glade
near a bottomless wishing well
too deep to reflect
my face.         knowing
coins are not God's
messengers, I throw
1 fat quid down the maw. 
I'm not getting
something crucial about
this antlered sunrise.
2.  London Aquarium
carve the water.    
I want the truth split open.
how do I know
these creatures -  with their
always moving mouths
& twitching bodies -
do not also
helplessly rage
this caliginous
artificial deep?
3. Bom Jesus, Portugal
in misty fountain spray
today, I will drink vinho
verde;  observe
fat carp making themselves
dizzy for tourists
with fists of biscuits.
a seething golden school
slashing the surface.
we throw bread
when it amuses us,
like God.

memory of flesh
heaving to my beak's yanks
and gashes.   wide
calculated wings once
circled a predictable
festival of gore,
black. clipped.
patient. deliberate.
men kill. 
ravens fall.
men rise.
we drop. 
snatch an ascent
coloured crimson. 
mud dark against turquoise
sky. skimming
the end of empires.
NOTE:  When the ravens leave the Tower Of London - according to legend -
the White Tower,  the Monarchy & England will fall.  They have been treated
exceptionally well for over 300 years.   Their wings are clipped.

Abney Park Cemetery
haphazard clusters.           graves rubbed                        clean of words,
looping celtic cross            knots split                                in one hundred
shards of shattered            memory.                                   shiny fresh
tombstones recently           flowered.     
five elders clutch                a tattered map                        plod
through brambles.              hold branches open              like doors. search
for old mates.                      a kestrel snatches                 birdsong.
daisies push up                  from broken                             sarcophagus,        
everyone here is laughing.