by Max Conley
I saw it failing in the lantern’s light;
a shock of white with time to tell the age.
I clicked my heels and flung the line of tight
configured tragedies that sang its cage.
The minutes swam, and it forgot to drown
within the diving bell that caught it in
the twine of withered ropes and rhymes, so down
it didn’t drop: at fault, a captious pin.
And thus these esoteric phrases form
the wrinkles born beneath its weathered eyes;
I rearrange its visage just to warm
the tethering to try to scorch the ties.
But dead and hollow days still rack the bell
that’s rusty, cold, and strains to peal its knell.