Thomas Lux


Marine Snow At Mid-Depths And Down


As you descend, slowly, falling faster past
you this snow,
ghostly, some flakes bio-
luminescent (you plunge,
and this lit snow doesn't land
at your feet but keeps falling below
you): single-cell-plant chains, shreds
of zooplankton's mucus food traps,
fish fecal pellets, radioactive fallouts,
sand grains, pollen....And inside
these jagged falling islands
live more microlives,
which feed creatures
on the way down
and all the way down. And you,
in your sinking isolation
booth, you go down, too,
through this food-snow, these shards,
bits of planet, its flora
and flesh, you
slip straight down, unreeled,
until the bottom's oozy silt, the sucking
baby-soft muck,
welcomes you
to the deep sea's bed,
a million anvils per square inch
pressing on your skull.
How silent here, how much life,
few places deeper on earth,
none with more width.

Submitted: Monday, January 13, 2003

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