The list of things you can’t know
Includes songs of the New Hebrides –
How to whistle south of the Solomons,
And arias of who died in the Coconut War.
You laugh, but it is not your sons
Who are fallen.
I insist on archipelagos,
Obscure republics and music of the spheres;
You teach me to recognize my mother,
Distant in the constellation of Virgo.
Chiaroscuro that passes the time,
Our hopeless conjuring as we drift.