At 4 a.m.

by John Thomas Clark
Up, like a giant sperm whale bursting free
Of the tentacles of the great squid, he
Breaches the surface of the nightmare-sea
To crash. On his sloggy sonar, he can see
Bioluminescent blips flash, flare, flee
From him, frame out, form up for him - to be
Gotham’s coruscating nightscape of three
Decades past – each bejeweled building a spree,
A spring to life. One, many, all Banshee-
Called, dip, dim, die in that Tsunami--
Then flicker. Fire-up. His fingertips? – ohhh, the glee –
His upraised hands - a Statue of Liberty.

Flameout! The molten slag of his esprit
Needs a weld from the torch of his eau de vie 1 .

1 eau de vie - colorless coarse brandy
A retired NYC elementary school teacher, John Thomas Clark lives in Scarsdale, NY with his wife Ginny, his daughter Chris, his son John and Lex, his black lab service dog. Currently, over one hundred of his poems are appearing in OCEAN, The Barefoot Muse, Byline, The Centrifugal Eye, Boston Literary Magazine, The Healing Muse, Tiger's Eye and thirty-one other journals.  The Joy of Lex--his light-hearted romp recounting life with Lex--will be published in book form later this year with an introduction written by Dean Koontz. (He is the "Writer in the Spotlight" in the current issue of Boston Literary Magazine.)

© 2008, John Thomas Clark