Zoetrope

PERRY BORDEN

(seventeen-thirty-nine to eighteen-oh-five)

Patriarch and Poet

let (y)our blood be the ink,
and (y)our line the seed

in the sea of time, I feel the need
to cross and to blot

each of (y)our silent memories up
from their plot; to replay the scene

of (y)our weaving fame into the stitches
of (y)our tattered name.

+

How like-a-zoetrope
Mystery plays her fading flame

onto the cycle of (y)our unknown shame;
razed and resurrected

from the churchyard west of the Minas
on the golden shore touching the Canard,

baptized in the tempest of the river
running hard through my veins—

(y)ours is the poesy of courtesy-calling glory,
fleeting and sought only in climes of vacant air;

migrant misers hoarding (y)our hurt, when we move,
our blood sweats itself into (y)our work,

“FOR THE WORLD TO OVERLOOK.”

Grandsire, I survived

(I survived and bound (y)our wicked curse into a little book).