he reads the welcome of swans

the ferryman knows his own life

is rich with incident

his paper boat, creased and folded

and he at the helm

cockeyed from staring at lovers

their haul of picnic baskets

his own palms worn thin

with the exchange of coins

his oar all dip and pull, the sweet

drag of water and always

returning, the bare-footed ones

who miss nothing

who no longer expect

the arrival of others

the ferryman rubs his eyes

a penny for each of them

the swan unfolds

the huge breathing of water

Frankie McMillian (1950- Christchurch, New Zealand)

Source: http://www.sweetmammalian.com/#!frankie-mcmillan/c14w3

Image cover: Weedeater, 2016 (a film on Nance Klehm, by Eden Batki, Marty Windahl, and Amy von Harrington)

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