13 July 2019
By Philip Kuepper
The whole ocean shifted.
The ship rocked. The stars
turned as though on a dial
in the sky. How purple the night,
a beautiful darkness everywhere.
A magician’s robe of darkness, starred,
dropped from the heavens,
a length of which I wrapped round me.
A wind rose.
I pulled the robe
of night closer round me.
I did not want to miss the spectacular.
I stayed adeck, too close the cabin,
the claustrophobic walls, a prison.
Rather the vast open room of night.
A sickle moon hung an earring
from a celestial lobe,
and glowed a faint light
on the dark handsome cheek,
Balthazar making his way slowly
along the Silk Road of destiny.
The ocean heaved a lover’s sigh,
then lay flat, taken by the depths
of sleep. I shivered.
My eyes glazed closed.
Did I sleep-walk to my cabin?
Come morning, I wakened
to the porthole, an oculus
of light so brilliant I thought
a star had fallen, and was burning there.
Then Balthazar was at the door with my breakfast tray.
(22 June 2019)