“Oh say can you see hope,” said the mother to her boy.
Their boat floated like a gurney cut loose in the infirmary of the
north Atlantic ocean, where hope still stands still putting the nurse
in nursery rhyme. See, she quells sea swells like cold sweats and
bedsores, all by dawn’s early light like old blood stuck on the green
frock that hope always wore.
“Her hair is on fire.” Said the boy to his mother, “See, It caught on
that torch when it fell from her fingers
when she saw in the distance the black wave behind us…”
The black wave from which boy and mother are running, the black wave
they do not talk about anymore.
And so when there was silence, The boy made up a story:
That in the falling of fire, Hope got a concussion and when came the
coma, Hope had a dream:
“she dreamed she was digging through the rubble of old houses and
found a pair of old living room cabinets and inside she found all
human history bootlegged onto an old VHS tape. And when she rewound it
she found it was beautiful just to watch it backwards in fast motion.
Bones loan themselves to young and old folks
miraculously healing from; HIV, cholera, the black death, and
chickenpox, then go galloping backwards
from tomb into womb like Russian matryoshka dolls.
Buildings appear out smoke and fireballs and bombs sucked into bellies
of American drones backing up out of war-zones like they shouldn’t
have been there in the first place.
People unpacked from slave-ships and set free in their homelands.
Drunken fathers, un-bruise boys and mothers,
then stumble back out to the bars just to get sober….”
And then boy fell silent.
But the mother, she took the up torch and reminding him;
she also saw:
Lovers un-love, and kissers un kiss, brilliance uninvented, all the
while all people made their long lap back into the garden of Africa.
On and on, until the whole globe groaned with it’s own home-grown
primordial foam tone
when the first cell stood alone and then degenerated and then that
would be the end because that was hope’s beginning…
Then boy and mother laughed as their boat cast into harbor and they
imagined the moment hope would wake from her coma, hysterical,
throwing her charred head into the ocean, tearing out into the parlous
night, oh so proudly shouting ‘Rejoice, rejoice - for as long as you
are alive, than so am I!’
“That is why there is hope,” said the mother to her boy, “For as long
as you live there will always be hope.”