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A quarterly international literary journal

Quantum Island

/ Poetry /

We have reached the smallest place.

The crew doesn’t understand

my plan, my map

they think some treasure’s buried here

and by the time we’re ashore I’m no longer captain.

But you can’t call it mutiny:

they know that if I die the ship

will vanish, and another

a superdreadnought flying the flag

of some valuebreak the horizon.

They subsist. I start inland.

When I thirst, wide thorned leaves

that usually trap insects

lie open, each a cup of rain.

Fruits hanging from the low boughs offer

protein as well as paradisal carbs.

When I pause, so does the landscape:

harsh outcrops soften, an escarpment

opens, suggesting a path;

flowers nod in that direction.

But what do I want to find?

That chest of doubly-looted gold

which alone would satisfy my cutthroats?

At the center, perhapsI say it is

of the island I encounter

a brilliantly clear pond

with reedy edges, creatures … It is the sea.


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