Karen Weiser

from Imagining Invisible Later

A Novel on Robinson Crusoe in 13 Poems

Chapter 2


A small windy hill

          boasted a small windy

minister            his

congregation at least three

                       sugared plums–



was calling

                       on fire.


He cast his

bowed, grubbygaze

into the pews

          beneath him

bright as a


answer back.


A gutter was


wind over a field of

                    prayer books

                    in his lap

          dared to

          widen and


          He was over

the following

indecent conduct. But

he had gone down

the coast road

          on a fine Thursday morning,

a horn spoon

          two blood puddings

          eight stitches

in a storm’s teeth.

Ever since he could



          the sea was a cruel mistress–

He was a tired and bedraggled


          loaded up

          ghostly white



The swaying motions of the boat

grew stronger

bellowed out like

the spine bending

straining against

a blackberry

                    in his breath

          the platform



but he didn’t care

looked out over

tiny, pin-size figures

pulling him away


on the windward side.


Chapter 7


Pounding into the hot morning mist

the ladies

took an invisible and deadly extra gift.


A cannon ball

          a sail

          they always passed the

last stitch through

          the body’s board.


At the great black rock islands

of the Galapagos

the shore                     collected turtles

and huge           fish

                          went missing.


          the rain drenched islands


with water                   then

returned once more to islands.


The Pacific

          glumly resolved to

          simply refit their heads

for the men had

                       broken open

their disappointment.


A little wind

                                    still a tiny

silhouette on the horizon

                    had still not caught up

but they could see the


          expecting a great tower

          but this one was just a sturdy


          and every hour inched a little

closer to the noise







                              in every direction.

          The morning,

a barely perceptible




minute striking at the

                              wet sand,

truer this time

                    making great


          Cracking of

confusion, things were becoming clearer

like peashot.


For every three

          cracks the


tried to speak a

                    horrible gurgle,


a liberty.

They would be men,

they must

          collect their prisoners, they must

rummage, and they must refit.



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