Lake: A Poem by David Rogers

Large bodies of water attract you because
their immensity confirms the suspicions
regarding your own relative size: horizons
are never straight lines since
time is round and space is not flat, lying
as it must on the uneven bottom of that great
lake whose coastline has never been accurately
mapped: the fractal nature of the coast itself
is partly responsible, though by my calculation
a map at least twice the size of the lake
and filled with simulated water is necessary
to approximate the pattern pebbles make
on sand: such a map will fit only in
the basement of the museum where in winter
the curator will allow it to freeze and go
skating, ostensibly to measure the effects
of tidal forces on the simulated ice but really
because she likes how the skates sound
and the breeze flutters her skirt and brandy
makes her toes warm: the human race has gotten
things wrong at every turn: the world is not flat
nor quite round nor at the center of whatever
universe it happens to be in at the moment:
god never existed: upstairs the dinosaurs glance
at a sky that always just now begins to rain fire.

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