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Driftwood Smoke

Where waves flatten their pounding
I skim a red ochre shard of pottery
over calm ripples: a question
it disappears in small skips
under ocean’s benign face


A question -
’What can we know of beauty?’


We, impudent spots on an island in time
lost on the shores of forever
building sand castles and driftwood fires
that crumble and die with faint hisses
when eternity’s tide comes in

What can we know of beauty?

All our restless ornateness
our encrustations of filigree architecture
even the odor of our smoke
soon forgotten
as the sand levels out at ebb

All that remains–
a fragment of mosaic,
a broken bust
to mark the place

where the faces in the stone
and the fingers of the sculptor
met for a short while
and conversed


Then from the deep
an answer comes:
Beauty is the place
where the excellence outside
and the excellence inside
meet and relate

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© Johnmichael Simon



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