FIGURE ON LONG WHARF
(New Haven, Connecticut)
The ground is wet tonight on Long Wharf. The figure’s boots sink into soft soil—
Each thrust of the shovel, a satisfying squelch of earth. The fetid smell of the Sound wafts up
from the shoreline Decomposition’s myriad flavors—
the ocean ripe for a night
of digging in moist ground.
The ground is wet tonight on Long Wharf
the rain has settled into mist
and the figure strains against the weight
of the tarp he drags behind—
his feet slipping in the mud of wet ground.
In the distance, he can hear the steady thrum, I-‐95 still humming with the rhythm
of human life. So easily, they live.
The figure pauses as he lifts his bundle,
he thinks about eggs, he thinks about maggots.
Sorrow is fulfilled through the movement of
wet soil—thrust, thrust, thrust and we are reborn. It no longer matters who we were or will be when
the ground is wet and Long Wharf calls—
we are just a figure, staring to sea and all
memory, all trace will be lost by sunrise.
Far from downtown,
its human feet buzzing with nocturnal energy,
each soul feeling infinite, strong-‐-‐
the pavement is not yet wet with rain.
But-‐-‐ the ground is wet tonight on Long Wharf