The Lighthouse (A Movie Poem)

Doldrums, doldrums

eviler than the devil.

The Cyclopes’ prism eye

revolves around me

in a mechanical chatter.

It calls out desires at night,

a mermaid cast up on shore

that awakens with the caw

of a thousand slaughtered gulls

sending me scrambling

back to the darkness,

afraid to touch

the brightness of hell.

Doom to scrub the deck

till shining like

a sperm whale’s pecker;

falling in the whitewash

and awakening to a gull

worming at me boot laces;

tugging barrels, lugging barrels,

spit polishing the insides of them.

Gulls have the souls of sailors

hidden inside their caw,

and when the weathervane

points to the east side wind

for seven months the waters

be too great to launch or land

and I be damned near

wedded to this here light.

Or she be a figment of my imagination

and I just be gull food

to peck on on these rocks?

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