Winter 2001 • Vol. XXIII No. 1 Poetry |

Epitaph

Beyond the traceries of the auroras, The fledgling fires of tattered sea foam, The ghost-terrain of submerged icebergs; Beyond the black sands of a cinder dome; Beyond peninsula and archipelago, Archipelago and far-flung islands, You have made of exile a homeland, Voyager, and of that chosen depth, a repose.   The eel shimmers and the dogfish darts, A dance of crisscrosses and trespasses Through distillate glints and nacreous silts, And the sun, like fronds of royal palm, Wind-tom and tossed, lashes upon the wake, But no lamplight mars or bleaches your realm, A dark of sediment, spawn, slough, and lees, Runoff, pitch-black, from the rivers of Psalms.

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Eric Pankey is the author of many collections of poetry, most recently Not Yet Transfigured (Orison Books, 2021). A chapbook called The Future Perfect: A Fugue is forthcoming from Tupelo Press. Pankey is the Heritage Chair in Writing at George Mason University.

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By Eric Pankey

Beyond the traceries of the auroras, The fledgling fires of tattered sea foam, The ghost-terrain of submerged icebergs; Beyond the black sands of a cinder dome; Beyond peninsula and archipelago, […]

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