Mark Doty

(10 August 1953 / Maryville, Tennessee)

A Green Crab's Shell


Not, exactly, green:
closer to bronze
preserved in kind brine,

something retrieved
from a Greco-Roman wreck,
patinated and oddly

muscular. We cannot
know what his fantastic
legs were like--

though evidence
suggests eight
complexly folded

scuttling works
of armament, crowned
by the foreclaws'

gesture of menace
and power. A gull's
gobbled the center,

leaving this chamber
--size of a demitasse--
open to reveal

a shocking, Giotto blue.
Though it smells
of seaweed and ruin,

this little traveling case
comes with such lavish lining!
Imagine breathing

surrounded by
the brilliant rinse
of summer's firmament.

What color is
the underside of skin?
Not so bad, to die,

if we could be opened
into this--
if the smallest chambers

of ourselves,
similarly,
revealed some sky.

Submitted: Monday, January 20, 2003

Do you like this poem?
0 person liked.
0 person did not like.

Read poems about / on: summer, power, green, sky, travel, work

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (A Green Crab's Shell by Mark Doty )

Enter the verification code :

There is no comment submitted by members..

Top Poems

  1. Phenomenal Woman
    Maya Angelou
  2. The Road Not Taken
    Robert Frost
  3. If You Forget Me
    Pablo Neruda
  4. Still I Rise
    Maya Angelou
  5. Dreams
    Langston Hughes
  6. Annabel Lee
    Edgar Allan Poe
  7. If
    Rudyard Kipling
  8. I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings
    Maya Angelou
  9. Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
    Robert Frost
  10. Invictus
    William Ernest Henley

PoemHunter.com Updates

New Poems

  1. Ghar sey chale toh the maikhane ko - Gha.., Talab ...
  2. Two Thumbs Up And No Head Bowed, Lawrence S. Pertillar
  3. I Am A Temple, Elma Burke
  4. dirTY scratches on a napkin by, the de.., sEaN nOrTh
  5. Words, Monica Lanier
  6. I Believed In You, Lilly Emery
  7. Fairyland, DEEPAK KUMAR PATTANAYAK
  8. Babul ki Dua, Akhtar Jawad
  9. The Greatest Dream, Jyothirmai Uppu
  10. overleg, co the skipper

Poem of the Day

poet Pablo Neruda

I want you to know
one thing.

You know how this is:
if I look
at the crystal moon, at the red branch
of the slow autumn at my window,
if I touch
...... Read complete »

   
[Hata Bildir]