Friday, 10 September 2010

Answering the Question by George Bishop

I was thinking
of the lizard walking
on water in the pool,
how it can dash across
a mirror or scale a wall—
yet, it couldn’t find a way
out this sky-blue cell.
There it was, doomed
to die while I watched.
Of course, my friend
wouldn’t let that happen
and neither would I—
she performed the rescue,
setting it free to live out
whatever was left of its tiny,
prehistoric life. Returning
to what she asked,
if I believed in the afterlife,
I said yes, without life.
I heard someone call it
The Hereafter somewhere
and something inside nodded
its bare, inside head.
She told me they were just words
and that it was either
the water or the rat terrier.
I hadn’t noticed the dog,
just the lizard and how
deceptively clear it can be
to touch two surfaces
at the same time.

George Bishop, Florida, USA


Dr. Cheryl Carvajal said...

I love the idea of the lizard having a "prehistoric" life. Yes, not much has changed for him since that time... makes me wonder what has changed for us.

Katherine said...

What a wonderful poem that takes on the big questions through the image of a little lizard. Touching two surfaces indeed!