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Sport 23: Spring 1999

Deconstructing the Holiday on a Wet Day

page 121

Deconstructing the Holiday on a Wet Day

Dust has gathered on the windowsills
smothering the shells of insects, wrapping them safe
for postage to an earlier year
where it does not rain, where one day
does not slide into another in the sly delight of ennui.

It is summer by the sea. The geologists of holiday
pick through stacks of magazines, bumper editions
for Christmas past, a sediment caught
in the superficial sludge of summer reading, browsing really,
digging through trivia with an indiscriminate pick.

Whole years may have one magazine only.
Others put on a variety of faces, haphazard like a mosaic
of sun-baked bricks, covers faded
where they have lain in the sun
unprotected by another's long possession.

Of such chances wet days are made. Whole histories
are rearranged with little thought. No doubt there could be deductions,
chronologies guessed at, families reacquainted
with the magpie urge of acquisition. And as more years pass
these magazines will acquire the certainty of fossils

allowing their chance accumulation, the work of moments once,
to represent epochs, sifting out their sequestered
trends through an arbitrary strobe.
Each of the magazines becomes a static exhibit in the hall
of half-truth, authoritative because that is all there is.