The Albatross

Night it is once more.  This time the moon

lifts its hangnail profile over the house.

The sky is filled with collapse.  Each fright supposes

illumination of a shadow play

moving under the experience of story,

linked to a cloudy waste of enterprise.

The eyes find broken McCluresque pantomimes

of meaning staked onto a plan that tells you

about whatever atmosphere it wants. 

Lean forward to the void and breathe the turning

emptiness of life.  This too will escape you.

Before the bluish blur of dawn descends

into the heat of day, the albatross

will cross the ship, its looping at a loss.

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About the Author

Allan Johnston earned his M.A. in Creative Writing and his Ph.D. in English from the University of California, Davis. His poems have appeared in over sixty journals, including Poetry, Poetry East, Rattle, and Rhino. He has published three full-length poetry collections (Tasks of Survival, 1996; In a Window, 2018; Sable and Selected Poems, 2022) and three chapbooks (Northport, 2010; Departures, 2013; Contingencies, 2015).

A. Johnston
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