By David Cook
What if the boat doesn’t float?
Sinks straight to the bottom?
And I end up with just a wet butt
And everything wasted.
The whole town will laugh.
But at least we saw the blue sky
Felt the sun on our arms and faces
My nose peels when we do that
And things only seem wasted.
Never you mind. The next one will float.
What if the flying machine don’t fly?
Busts itself up in the field?
Maybe that’s how I broke my arm.
Mary Sue fussed over me,
Brought me water.
Nita Lou said “Let’s take you to my granddad;
He’ll know how to set it.”
Cared for me, she did.
“Oh, well, the next one will fly.
I know you’ll figure out how.
Maybe that part that goes around needs
To be fastened on stronger.”
Yeah! I see that it does.
Well, at least we got to see the day,
And the hills all curving and sweeping
Like a fine lady waiting for her lover
Clothed in summer and all her best.
So you keep on living;
You keep from dying by the next thought
Trying: thinking the next idea up close to the roof
Until the day corruption comes
To thrust between my lips
To bring to naught the labor of all my thoughts,
As I lay busy inventing the next life;
The one that will work where this one failed.
She weeps downstairs
But we tasted the strawberries
We tasted the honey and the coconut
We watched the moon rise
And so became a part of us forever
The thing that never dies.
David Cook, a lifelong Episcopalian living in Piedmont North Carolina, has retired from a career as a medical writer, and is now branching out into creative writing.