Journey to the End


On a little peninsula 
In a dredged-out bay
An old man with a sack
Upon his shoulder
Feeds the crows



Along a tiny peninsula
As white as salt
An old man with a heavy sack
Upon his shoulder
Saunters feeding



Cinematomorphic flashes from
Peninsular train windows
Railroad the complete splitting
Of the crow-peopled cosmogony:
(Yet knowing that to be
Is better than to be going.)



Apocalyptics unanimous
Disengage and deburrow
Black as corby night descends
The moon knifes down 
Upon the tiny salt-flat-white



An old man with a heavy sack
Flings it to the crows.

From Tau by Philip Lamantia and Journey to the End by John Hoffman, edited by Garrett Caples © 2008 by City Lights and Nancy Peters for the Estate of Philip Lamantia. Reprinted with the permission of City Lights Books.