Curiosity

by George Bowering

The neonate looked up at me with eyes
I have known forever. Then clouds, white on top,
grey underneath, slid behind those eyes, the way
a dog methodically licks vanilla ice cream
out of a paper cup. I step all over images
people have left behind in their hurry
to get to the delicatessen, where a famous
admiral is sitting down to a heavy sandwich.
His eyes have seen dark clouds in a medicine chest,
dancing men on a moist deck; he eats with
decorum, his devotees at the window, hands
beside their eyes, hungry and midsize in their
spring outfits. The baby knew I was there,
I know this for a certainty, its placid demeanor
no match for my anxiety, the quality
that has got me through a thousand confrontations.
If you have any desire to know my secret heart,
read on, I hear it coming, we can divine
the cosmic weather’s intentions by its ability
to imitate the peace beyond curiosity.