Summer 2010 - THE POTOMAC

Two Poems
   Carroll Hamilton

Annual Report to the Stockholders

I told the children,
“No one knows. This
is a theory.” She said,
“But I know.” At ten-years-old,
she told us. She was
as eager as John Nash
to confound, to slash
chalk all over the boards
covered with past wisdoms
smeared away to a fine dust.
My mind floats right past
game theories, dark matter,
dark energy, manifolds,
black holes and quasars.
There are dimensions
I cannot conceive,
colors clear off my spectrum,
sounds only a dog or a cockroach
can hear. I learn to drop
their names as if they were
old friends, but the truth is,
my equations always left me
staring at my work, scratching
my head, able to continue
the lecture only with a quavery
voice, dry lips. I later heard
that at fourteen, she ran away
from home, headed west,
Las Vegas, I think. She always
was sure the numbers
were on her side.

Sundial Inscription
“I record only the sunny hours”

Rehab is this world of little choice
Where brutal “less” is given voice.

Young drill sergeant gathers up debris
From age and accident with pleas

To move again in some new way,
To navigate as in a simpler day,

To rise in light and move about
With certain steps instead of doubt.

New strategies are learned beyond the end
Of worlds we shaped and can no longer bend.

A shaky step, a spoon to lips,
First turning round from long eclipse.

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