Now to take a moment for all the poems this did not in fact become
of the soft avocado flesh
turning slowly brown…
where every last eyelash
the woodworker’s sawdust,
the sculptor’s shavings,
lying still on the floor
by the new bench, the new piece,
waiting for the old broom…
My wedding band sits in Reykjavik harbor
For a brief moment it twirled
in the arctic dusk, then dove.
From a distance, throwing arm
in silhouette, feet rooted on the
lava breakwall, it might have
seemed an act of spite. It was not.
What happiness the ring enclosed–
I gave thanks for that. Its gold
I returned. May its glint catch
the beady eye of a langoustine
or that of some small harborfish–
a little nibble not the death
that comes with the hook.
Let the creature, whatever it is,
attempt to digest it, in the spots
where I tried and failed.
Perhaps a whale will breath
it in and blow it out to some
deeper sea. That is the idea–
a rejoining with the larger
world. Or maybe it will just
sit still on the ground lava,
and when new storms come
I can imagine the silence
writ down there, safe
from prop, from keel, from net.
Michael J. Galko is an Associate Professor of Genetics at MD Anderson Cancer Center. His laboratory studies wound healing and pain, as does his poetry. He has lived about a third of his life each in New England, California, and Texas. He has recently had poems published or accepted at The Red River Review, Poetry WTF!?, Failed Haiku, bottle rockets, Right Hand Pointing, The Ocotillo Review, The Red Eft Review, and The Mojave River Review. In 2016 he was a juried poet at the Houston Poetry Fest.