The Little Review (littlereview) wrote,
The Little Review

Poem for Wednesday

By request, another one by Patten.

The Armada
By Brian Patten

   Long, long ago
when everything I was told was believable
and the little I knew was less limited than now,
I stretched belly down on the grass beside a pond
and to the far bank launched a child's armada.
   A broken fortress of twigs,
the paper-tissue sails of galleons,
the waterlogged branches of submarines -
all came to ruin and were on flame
in that dusk-red pond.
   And you, mother, stood behind me,
impatient to be going,
old at twenty-three, alone,
thin overcoat flapping.
   How closely the past shadows us.
In a hospital a mile or so from that pond
I kneel beside your bed and, closing my eyes,
reach out across forty years to touch once more
that pond's cool surface,
and it is your cool skin I'm touching;
for as on a pond a child's paper boat
was blown out of reach
by the smallest gust of wind,
so too have you been blown out of reach
by the smallest whisper of death,
and a childhood memory is sharpened,
and the heart burns as that armada burnt,
long, long ago.


It's my husband's birthday and my parents have offered to babysit until late evening but he can't make up his mind what he wants to do, so I have no idea what we're doing. I thought maybe he wanted me to take him somewhere instead of feeling like he had to make plans himself, so I made numerous offers, but he has rejected every movie I've suggested, doesn't want to schlep anywhere downtown, and apparently wants to eat at the restaurant where we end up by default with the kids practically every weekend.

I cannot decide whether this signifies something good and comfortable or something slightly bored/apathetic/aggravated, so am choosing simply to ignore it till this evening. Maybe he just doesn't want to deal with entertainment on a work night, or maybe he figures we'll spend money this weekend when his parents will be watching our kids so his actual birthday doesn't matter. But the non-communication either way is somewhat annoying. In him it is nearly impossible sometimes to tell genuine lack of concern from passive aggressiveness, and I have zero tolerance for the latter, having gotten it from my mother all my life.

Gacked from celandineb among others:

— My journal is called "Your Cruise Director's Log" because way back in the day in Star Trek fandom, when I was in a group of online fans and everyone was claiming positions, I said that if I could have any job on a starship, I would want to be like Julie on The Love Boat, who was in charge of entertainment and making sure there was enough 'shippiness to go around.
— My subtitle is, um, I don't have one, because I have most of The Love Boat theme song on my page and figured enough was enough.
— My friends page is called "Love Boat Passengers" because, heh, keeping with the theme. I mean, my calendar is called "Itinerary" and my user info is called "Crew Manifest."
— And, just for the hell of it: My username is "cruisedirector" because Cruise Director was Julie's job title and "yourcruisedirector" did not meet LiveJournal's approval.

wednesday100 is about spring break. Once again I find that I have nothing to say. Maybe it's really over between me and Smallville, which would be sort of sad as it's right there on TV and free and no longer interfering with Enterprise even, but I am just not inspired. Who's got the S&H reruns?

I seem to be way behind on correspondence again. Had better go do something about that.

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