“Through my small, bonebound island I have learned all I know, experienced all, and sensed all. All I write is inseparable from the island.”— Dylan Thomas
Why separate what is connected? You cannot.
The teeth of life and life work are twined by fine thread.
An island is a skeleton in a sea of constellations, floating.
What holds together is firm as a wisp of wind.
When I was young enough not to know better, I thought I knew it all.
Now I am old as the smallness, and I know nothing now.
When I was born, my life hardened into rock,
now is worn down by the sea.
Each grain of sand is a part of me. Each writes deeply into me.
I am reading what is written in me, and is still written silently.
All the days pass as stars, tiny as minnows following silence.
I find myself a part of them, parting from them, into the sea.
Martin Willitts Jr is the winner of the Dylan Thomas International Poetry Award, in honor of the 100 centennial. He is the author of 6 full-length collections including national ecological winner "Searching for What Is Not There" (Hiraeth Press. 2013) and 28 chapbooks including contest winner "William Blake, Not Blessed Angel But Restless Man" (Red Ochre Press, 2014). He has been in Poppy Road many times. This poem is based on his trip to Wales.