The Fort

From the weathered boards knots pop
like the eyes of potatoes. From brick
salients not a clink of a pupil in a loop-
hole. Cannon, yes, but without their kick.

Ironically or entirely appropriately,
who can say, the Fort will not admit us.
The reenactors are going home; we see
them retreat, backs x’d with sus-

penders, toward the forest housecleaned
into state park. Ocean beyond the ramparts
suggests that stem-celled seconds fiend-
ishly agglomerate with fits and starts

into unprecedented forms. And so
who cares that a fort’s built on a sand bar,
that we don’t make it in, and go
only so far round the perimeter.

More Poems by Ange Mlinko