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DAVE RUSLANDER

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The Passing

The Old One sits above 
in a limestone outcrop. 

He taps 
his tong tong sticks 
ancestral echoes begin. 
Bamboo flutes and chants
accompany him. 

Women build a driftwood pyre. 
Sparks fly to black,
fire dances with the moon.

Five men on papyrus 
float in the sea -- 
reading the currents, 
they will not circle round.

To the wedding 
of sky and water
they sail.

The glowing pyre drowns in the horizon. 
Three sunrises pass. 

On the still dark morning 
of the fourth,
the sailors see fire 
waltzing with the moon 
where sky meets land. 

The tribe has passed over
to a new island, 
and cannot recollect their way back.


Copyright 2003 Dave Ruslander

 






 

 

 
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