Martin Willitts Jr, four poems


Son, My Chronology Ends with You

Believe this island, wide as your arms.

This launching forward, it is yours.

You only need

to dive in, into the magnified sun-fulfilled moment.

Believe. Believe clouds

thrash until you survive; then, you’re gone,

the world erases behind you.

We are allowed eccentricities and tidewater equally.

Believe me, son,

you will come to a house

at a certain age, and you will not own the key.

That is how it goes. Whisk, and you are gone.

Your arms will be testaments to what you do not have,

and your life will become inertia.

I make this origami boat. It can be as big as nothing,

or small as promises never kept.

Now, I set you out on it,

straight into the perpendicular sunset. Feel

the canvas jibsheet trying to catch wind

as if it was a comet tail. Make the turn,

shifting the rudders. Then,

you’re gone

over into the vanishing horizon,

lavender skies ahead,

the sun folding behind the landscape.

Believe me: the air is crazy,

threading through sails,

that last dram of sunlight,

burnt like roses.