Today's poem is by Tom C. Hunley

Elegy for Robert Creeley and Pope John Paul II, Dead Three Days Apart

Something dramatic is going to happen to me soon.
I feel myself and the whole world reset
to slow motion, and the hotel room I'm in
holds its breath. I see pigeons scatter
and clap their wings. I hear slow, operatic music,
and I feel scores of invisible fingers
fumbling at the threads that hold me together.

The black clouds outside are pregnant women
approaching labor, and as the sunspot
disappears from my carpet, I understand
that every godforsaken thing in this luminous world
will drift away, cloudlike;
as I slow-motion my way
to the window, the birds circle.

I see my hotel mirrored in the windows of another hotel,
and I see 10,000 people, vigilant outside my window.
They shout that I'm the next pope,
they toss up prayers and pigeons,
and a few detractors shout that I should jump.

The world speeds up again, like windswirling
leaves, and the crowd scatters in all directions
as if to say oh, you're a poet, not the pope, our mistake,
determined not to notice me, even while I open the window and bellow:
my body is breaking down, too;
my spirit, too, will soon drift far, far off,
and all of you, too, you too.

Pope John Paul II, pray for us.
Robert Creeley too.

Copyright © 2008 Tom C. Hunley All rights reserved
from Octopus
Logan House Press
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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