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Before and After

After the fireworks
but before dawn,
after the crowds crushedpast
but before absolutelyeveryone had made it home,
after the smoke re-formedseveral times
but before it completelydrifted up Burrard Inlet,
after I’d shaken thetwigs out of the Mexican blanket
but before it wastucked away for the night,
after I’d made itmostly home
but before, long beforeI turned the key in the lock,

I had a moment…

Before the sky’s realclouds fully cleared
yet after the circlingplanes had landed,
before the lightinglight blue over the North Shore mountains
yet after the boatshad all mostly berthed,
before I was totallyengulfed by buildings
yet after I’d leftthe cleared canopy of Vanier Park,

The moment had me…

As I looked up, justwest of the westernmost clouds,
  like up overVancouver Island,
it could have beenVenus, or Saturn or a star, doesn’t matter.
It just sat there,doing nothing
blinking, actually,
on its own, or withatmospheric help, doesn’t matter.
Ignoring us all, or
watching us all, whichever,doesn’t matter.

And it mocked us all.
Mocked our light pollution,
our temporary no parkingsigns,
our English Bay grandstandand barbeque,
our drunk boaters
our Subway sign trailingthat plane.
And before the Symphonyof Fire ever was,
and after it’s asdust as Expo nightly laser shows,
that light
above Vancouver Island
will blink.

Copyright 2002, StephenBuckley
08.07.02, 1030-1100pm 

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