Under the surface
beyond the marsh’s black and gold
something is going on

Leaves like sailboats browned by the wind
move mysteriously to and fro
invisible creatures pulling strings
setting the course
lower down

so that what we see 
is not the real story: even the ducks 
tripping between logs 
write propaganda

What causes the pain is uncertain,
why the ripples are magnified, 
how deep the water is, and how warm

None of this can be measured
all can be misconstrued
and lies can be told quite safely

The sun lights the scene,
then shadows gather:
there is laughter in the distance
and a bonfire beyond the boardwalk

but a power beyond it all
that never changes

I close the hatch:
now my little world is dark,
and I cannot see the door

Outside, mud lies deep
on the path to heaven