Autumn Sky Poetry . . . Number 14 . . .

On Certainty

     by W.F. Lantry

          "And every sand becomes a Gem" — William Blake

I finger shells, collected, sent to me
as tokens, unambiguous and clear
as Caribbean waters I have seen
only in represented images.
In this one, grayish-white, I see the lines
running along my palm reflected; in

another, tiny flaws let blue light through.
The light recedes. I'm with her on the shore
as late sunlight reflects from scattered grains
along the water's edge, her voice, the bird's,
this sound of small waves breaking, and the wind
touching her arms and mine in unison-

but no: arriving as a memory
these shells, already limestone relics, give
only impressions of a symmetry
between us, undecidable, these shapes
formless as unknown shorelines, yet I touch
their curves as representative of her.

W.F. Lantry received his Licence and Maîtrise from the Université de Nice, M.A. in English from Boston University, and Ph.D. in Literature and Creative Writing from the University of Houston. He is the recipient of the Paris/Atlantic Young Writers Award. His poetry has appeared in Gulf Coast, Tennessee Quarterly, Umbrella, and The Tower Journal. He currently serves as the Director of Academic Technology at The Catholic University of America in Washington, DC.

© 2009 W.F. Lantry