Quicksilver In Memory of Michael Macklin

by Kathleen Sullivan

Do you find yourself watching now
for stubborn crows, penny nails, limpet shells,

the dimpled light on an orange?
Now can you hear the aural roundness

of words, the ohsoflowery sentence,
the friend in need of a cup of tea?

Through the alchemy of relationship
we aren’t pure, vacuum sealed packets

of Self, but amalgams of each other,
metamorphic rocks born of

azurite and cinnabar mica and feldspar
opal and lodestone.

The gulls, the sky shrouded in clouds,
a silver mist and a slack wind

somewhere, maybe nosing
the bow through the blind wooly fog,

sounding for the rattle of metal fittings
or the sucking sigh of water, rock

premonitions, collisions unforeseen
you heard it, that voice, its confection

of velvet and gravel, something like
his own and something like Michael’s

you couldn’t tell the difference
anymore. Friends gathered, elements of

Michael remembered through the mist
seeping in under the doors

from the ocean outside,
you could almost see winking

pulses of light bright as quicksilver,
silent as a June field of fireflies

gold and amber flecks
(and for balance black obsidian, iron)

combining, recombining, living
in the crowded heaven of ourselves.