Investigating the life of things across space and time


She is overloaded.
The greedy captain swears
in the screaming air
his vowels howling.
The sheeting rain
the slanting sail of bull hide
smack the mast sideways.
In the suddenly vibrating water
she sways, unbalanced
dragging oars and rudder
against rocks and current.
Her winged figurehead
splinters in surprise as she is
stoved through her lead plating
her Aleppo pine sheathing
and her ribs of Lebanese cedar.
Her last breath is the empty
boom of wood cleaved
on bony coral hooks.
Her last sound is the hollow
collapse of an amphora
rolled deep and struck,
spilling a purple plume
of Sicilian wine into
the red morning tide.

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