Invincible Summer |||

Magellan and me

Magellan’s in his cabin, studying old charts
he’s made to fool his cheap and wary crew.
A stiff wind blows, and we sail down the street:
the same old tack, me listening to you.

I wonder who is bold enough with words
to circumnavigate himself like this?
Magellan leans across the rail to spit
and stares across his wood and water world.

I hold your hand. I hope you still can steer
because I’ve got my eyes shut tight again. 
There’s monsters, but I don’t know if it’s fear
of them that stops me looking, or just pain. 

Magellan’s at Cape Horn. We’re not, and I
am ready to turn back. I guess we each
discover life with fear. He’s getting near 
to everything. I’m further out of reach.

I’ve washed up in a tavern on the shore
and hear the news as if I knew before:
Magellan didn’t make it. How can I
repeat his story, but not even try?