Fame

 

You think one day “What happened to

that band we listened to in high school?”

Instantly a song breaches the surface,

not music but memory, out-of-focus.

God that was years ago. When it played

at the fall dance, some squealing,

some groaning, some with a wry look.

Each of us knew it in our own way.

 

It turns out nothing happened to them.

It happened that weekend in LA

you drove to see them, there before

the thousands, strutting between the lights.

They lived it, and you saw, and until

now had forgotten, and that was all.


R Charboneau

Sonnet for David Attenborough

 

Science tells us the process exists

in the thing itself. A chimpanzee

is the sum of its processes, both

kinds within and without, one

metaphor of iteration at all scales.

Physiognomies, behaviors, moods

multiplied out of primordial soups,

spermatogeneses, ancestors as large

as sperm, once the largest things 

living on the face of the earth.

All this in the glassy look

of a chimpanzee clumsily

shucking nut-paste with a spatula

fashioned from a broken stalk.


R. Charboneau