Clark must act as taught, he thinks,
though it isn't any fun.
He wants to clear his throat, to drink,
and possibly to run. Instead
he sits, stone still, watches a stream
of syrup-like light pour through
a space where late a shingle lay.
It slithers down a rafter, flays
off a splinter, and drips
into his sipping eyes.
Ellis' old face glistens
in its beam: sagging wrinkles wave
like a flag in the wind,
flapping from jaw to crown,
as speaking lips undulate --
but Clark is deaf to all sound.
You'd be too, seeing what he does:
-- that Ellis is prattling
to a depraved community,
a rattling assemblage of bone.
Clark's new vision
has swept the chalky coat off
a picture he thought he knew.
It is an unflattering one,
an image long hidden from
dull lenses -- it makes him finally run.
Darting from the chapel...
Fleeing the mold, the stench
of an insect infested edifice...
Leaving Ma's shame and dismay
at his behavior behind him...