The hour will come, oblivious to your noticing,
when you’ll look back and see that the shore
is truly far away and the boat you’re in,
bobbing miles from any clear destination.
From that distance it will be hard to tell
what the sunlight strikes hard and
fractures: the chrome edge of a pair of
sunglasses, the unibrow of the man
wearing it, the neon stripes of the beach
umbrellas that now look ridiculously small
and crowded around the rim of a dirty
yellow margarita glass. And you will ask,
stranded in the middle of it all, whether you
really still need sunblock or if the little
stencils of color floating before your eyes
are a sign— everything that once
pinned you to the business of diminishing
returns, has called it quits. Now only this
expanse, its lesson unrolling like a sutra:
unfurnished, unambiguous, pithy,
comprehensive; continuous, without flaw.
In response to an entry from the Morning Porch.
Poet Luisa A. Igloria (Poetry Foundation web page, author webpage ) is the winner of the 2015 Resurgence Prize (UK), the world’s first major award for ecopoetry, selected by former UK poet laureate Sir Andrew Motion, Alice Oswald, and Jo Shapcott. She is the author of What is Left of Wings, I Ask (2018 Center for the Book Arts Letterpress Chapbook Prize, selected by Natasha Trethewey); Bright as Mirrors Left in the Grass (Kudzu House Press eChapbook selection for Spring 2015), Ode to the Heart Smaller than a Pencil Eraser (Utah State University Press, 2014 May Swenson Prize), Night Willow (Phoenicia Publishing, 2014), The Saints of Streets (University of Santo Tomas Publishing House, 2013), Juan Luna’s Revolver (2009 Ernest Sandeen Prize, University of Notre Dame Press), and nine other books. She is a member of the core faculty of the MFA Creative Writing Program at Old Dominion University which she directed from 2009-2015. In 2018, she was the inaugural Glasgow Distinguished Writer in Residence at Washington and Lee University. When she isn’t writing, reading, or teaching, she cooks with her family, knits, hand-binds books, and listens to tango music.