THE DENSITY OF DEATH
Death enters the Physics Laboratory
meanders past the magnets' poles
wires coil on spools and rolls
the slide projector stops its story
Darkness diffracts through sharp-edged prisms
sweeps across oscilloscopes
blackens textbooks' indexed hopes
and silences their catechisms
An airless breeze turns supercool
as volt-ohmmeter's needle dips
the teeth of the alligator clips
are clenched unopening and cruel
Not vacuum tubes that hold their breath
nor manuals for engineers
erase from blackboards of our fears
the chalky fingerprints of Death.
22 Apr 87
[in Dr. Theodore N. Sarachman's lab, Whittier College]
JONATHAN VOS POST
Copyright 1996, 1997 by Emerald City Publishing.
All rights reserved. May not be reproduced without permission.
May be posted electronically provided that
it is transmitted unaltered, in its
entirety, and without charge.