One night Sylvia and I were talking about this and that, when Shakespeare’s sonnet #55 came up–where he brags about how his poem will live until the end of time; that is, until Judgment Day: “Not marble nor the gilded monuments/Of princes shall outlive this powerful rhyme…” I submit this humble response:
Not sonnets nor the marble Taj Mahal
can last until the universal night.
The monuments we build to love must fall,
our couplings brief, a meteoric flight.
Insects and galaxies, all are in thrall
to death, and each has its allotted time.
The slug knows this. On dewy nights it crawls
through leaf decay, leaving a trail of slime
perfumed with pheromones to lure a mate.
Each is both he and she. When they unite
they form a yin and yang to penetrate,
throbbing for hours in circular delight.
Seize then, and stretch the moment, hoping we
can reach a gastropodal ecstasy!