Chicano Poet

Monday, January 28, 2008

The Sloop John B

When he jumped from the bridge,
he saw his own shadow
fly off to one side

as if it was afraid
of being crushed
at the end of what was happening.

And sure enough,
the shadow saved itself,
but only for a moment

because the jumper
somehow was able to land
precisely where the shadow sought refuge.

The thud disturbed
a mound of river silt.
A bystander rushed to the scene to scream.

The autopsy revealed
that the poet had suffocated,
yet no one suspected

that he had created
the world’s most marvelous poem
on the way down.


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