by M.A. Schaffner
The Love Boat kisses the rock; dinner plates
jump boldly from astonished passengers
before they get to dessert. Everyone
wonders if they missed this on the schedule.
Nuns pray on the deck, having read Hopkins.
The entertainers worry for their pay.
Girls touch up makeup, boys try to act brave.
Gamblers count their winnings, not their sins.
As the ship groans and rolls onto its side
the rock remains calm, contemplating
a collection that started with Phoenicians
and – till now – ended with an S Boat
in a hurry – like this – to nearby ports
the rock can only dream of, even now.