by Paul Hooker

There should have been some reckoning.
As if the passing solar terminator
moving at the velocity of despair
might occasion no alarm,
as if sailors on an ancient ship
whose course drops off the world’s edge
might not attend the warning
on the charts: Here there be dragons.

There is a wonder in the dark.
The curtain in creation’s temple
that separates mysterious and mundane
parts to permit the curious a peek
and sacraments leak out around the edges.
Solar flares light matches in the clouds,
and the hair of the world is on fire.
The Holy of Holies is on the loose.

Shall nothing change?
Shall the light’s return not stiffen
the resolve to beat back the dark?
Mute conscience pantomimes its witness
to pain and folly at the gates of Hell.
We are a culture of observers.
We smile and watch the light of the world go out
looking through these special paper sunglasses
so as not to burn our eyes. Abandon hope.