The Lost Explorers
Give me the lost explorers, the last-seens,
gone missings, vanished-in-fog, no wreckage found,
with names that ring with danger, like Uemura
and Crozier, or rhyme with awe, like Fawcett,
lost seeing Z, the last alphabet letter,
the hidden city in Brazil he’d peer at
through jungle vines. Perhaps he found it,
walked with a lover there, and never left.
I’m for the one who feels exile at home
and breathes deep on departures, who would quit
leather recliners for a matchbox plane
to soar in, clutching a wind-blown chart;
the one who drives a dogsled through the snow’s
blank pages, the way unmarked by tracks
or wheelruts, and the life an open question.
Names echo like the last notes of a fugue.
Watch them stir to chatter in hissing consonants
and growls of a new language; dare them to travel
across the world’s time zones until they find
extra days, past and future. I’ll cheer for
listeners to wind song, losing balance
only to right themselves (who hasn’t walked on,
steadier, once lost?), just as I write this
with broken compass and no GPS.