1 January 2016

by Paul Hooker

It is early yet.
Orion has not dropped his bow,
though wearied of the eternal hunt,
though by dawn the great bear will elude him
yet again.

It is early yet,
daylight a distant gamble,
dream that was and might yet be,
pendulum slung between the antipodes
of darkness.

It is early yet.
I neither sleep nor rouse
from sleep’s cloying, comfortable embrace.
I swim the channel through the night, uncertain
of a landing.

It is early yet.
Cold-sharp breath excises
necrotic yesterday, tomorrow bleeds
its way to birth, stillborn or still unborn—
who knows?

It is early yet
to divine the way,
to limn the shape of pleasure, pain,
to chart the course of fear or faith, and still
I hope.