Punta del Este PantoumBy Chip Livingston
Accept my need and let me call you brother,
Slate blue oyster, wet sand crustacean,
In your hurrying to burrow, wait. Hover.
Parse opening’s disaster to creation’s
Slate, to another blue-eyed monstrous sand crustacean,
Water-bearer. Hear the ocean behind me,
Pursued, asking to be opened, asking Creation
To heed the tides that uncover you nightly.
Water-bearer, wear the water beside me,
Hide your burying shadow from the shorebirds,
But heed the tides that uncover you nightly.
Gems in sandcastles, stick-written words,
Hidden from the shadows of shorebirds,
Washed over by water. Waters revelatory
Gems, sand, castles, sticks, words—
Assured of erasure, voluntary erosion.
Watched over with warrior resolution,
Crab armor, claws, and nautilus heart,
Assured of a savior, reconstruct your evolution,
Clamor to hear, water scarab, what the tampered heart hears.
A scarab’s armor is light enough to fly.
In your hurry to burrow, wait. Hover.
Hear the clamor of the crustacean’s heart.
Heed this call of creation. Call me brother.
Chip Livingston, "Punta del Este Pantoum" from Sing: Poetry from the Indigenous Americas. Copyright © 2011 by Chip Livingston. Reprinted by permission of Chip Livingston.
Source: Sing: Poetry from the Indigenous Americas (The University of Arizona Press, 2011)