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Boomers on a Cruise


“Everything, O monks, is burning.” – Buddha


The isles of Greece, the isles of Greece,

where we've obtained on credit cards

one tapestry of silky fleece,

two icons, three amphora shards.


Two noble truths:  That life is pain

and that our cravings are the cause.

But here we've all grown young again

and laughter routs the cosmic laws.


On Delos, once a treasure town,

grey lizards flick the drying dust,

where once ambitious Greeks burned down

in anger, ignorance, and lust.


Our ocean-going steel cocoon

spins out the silk of innocence.

Only the water and the moon

bring whispers of impermanence.


On Santorini, once the home

of vampires, we look out to sea

from underneath a bluer dome,

and call this noon eternity.


The sun melts down in tropic gold

like Strega in a cocktail glass.

The moon and moon-drawn tides are old

and, like the dinosaurs, will pass.


We build up shelves against the tide:

our luxuries, our work-out tapes.

But slowly we burn down inside,

and find there are no fire escapes.


Gail White



© 2002; originally printed in Iambs & Trochees.
Reprinted by permission of the author.

by Grapholina

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