Photograph by  Veronica Kornberg

Photograph by Veronica Kornberg

You can spend a life like this—a creature
of tentacles and spikes holed up in a stone pit
of your own making. A compound eye
with a lid of pebbles to shutter the light.
Do you think I mean cramped or small? Listen.
What I see—O radiant punk 
singing violence in the sunken garden—
how for decades, you beam the purple rays
of your lantern, read the planktonic
stream written on cold pages:
kelp, flea, fry, foam, larvae, louse. Bloom
or barren.
How without seeming to move,
you preside over the great untethering
of kelp forest columns, gnaw deeper
into rocks and pluck the buzz from the still
pool at low tide. Even in death, shattered
and swallowed by sea otter, you violet
the bones of your enemy.

Veronica Kornberg