As the Shadows, Long

god, the universe, the not-me, the power, the void, nothing at all:

Like the arm on a skeet trap flinging clay,
automatic, relentless flinging
a spinning disc to water,
flying, the critical first few
rev-o-lu-tions                                                                                                                               determine entry angle, providing work
for soothsayers who make stories out of
the geometry, ridiculously or not–
maybe they get lucky sometimes.

And there it is, the random trap shot clay,
running flat, true or turned, inevitable,
a glance on the surface of time
and then up, still spinning as if time
itself is doing the throwing.

The apex,
the stoppage is so brief.
One moment, clarity, fake or real who cares,
but everything is slow for a moment,
I’m in it now I imagine, and then back down
having never really stopped at all,

And skipping to a stop, petered out.

The writers call it the arc,
pretentious and poetic a little.
Other people, the rest of us, call it a pastime, a life?–
all that happens between two skips of a stone
and the skips too,
before we sink                                                                                                                        

(five? ten?, one day on the Frio River I threw a stone for 13 skips)                                                                           across the water.

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