João Luís Barreto Guimarães - THE SCHEME OF THINGS

All night we navigated the Strait
of Messina (far away from ancient wars
where stones flew). I did
just what you would do—
like repetitious waves breaking
full-blown on the beach
rehearsing imperfections on a sea with
no off switch. Behind us the gods stayed
at ease in Taormina (Poseidon
granting rest to a school of yachts
a certain Hephaestus hoarding the
snow at Etna’s ridge). And I did
just what you’d do
(like the copy of a key in the act
of being replicated).

Translated by Calvin Olsen