The Voyage

He left his village for another, there was simply too much blood.

It coloured his mornings red, his nights, too, and poisoned

all the in-between hours.  He knew that if he lingered he

would hear their fists on his door, see their fingers pry open

his windows, feel their voices in his lungs.


So much noise.  Can’t one just live in quiet peace?

Did the holy one shout his way to the sky?  Who heard him?

Does one always need to be heard this way?


In the fourth village many weeks later, he still had enough legs

to hit the road again.  So many legs, but you are given only two.

You are also only given one head.  He had left father, mother,

sisters.  Perhaps everyone had gone away by now.  In his pocket,

he felt a key but there was nothing left for it to open.  He felt

useless, keeping something useless, for nothing.


Finally, the sea, the wide open sea.  He wanted the sea.  Now,

anything was better than land, especially his land.  He took

out of his pocket his own clenched fist, tight with money.

The boat was waiting to take him far away, he didn’t much care

where as long as it was away.


Too late for phone calls.  Too late for breakfast.  Too late for sleep.

But not too late for the sea.  Not too late for his tired feet.  Not

too late for his head.


The boat was full of people such as he.  Everyone wet with the

waves, wet with fear, wet with cold, wet with keys that no longer

opened doors.


[This poem promises to be a lot longer than what I can write for the marathon, so, for now, this will have to do.]



©  Ella Wagemakers, 08.51 Dutch time (= 2.51 EST in the US)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *