The entire world was there. The magnetic north pole was there. Prince Patrick Island was introduced to Prince of Wales Island and these were not the only islands being introduced to other islands. One room was completely filled with the space around all the islands. When you asked me if I was an island I told you that I was not. When you asked me to join you in the drawing room, I told you that I could not, that I was in fact an island and that I couldn’t join anyone anywhere. Saddened and resigned, you revealed to me that you were not the two things that jut outward into the sea as I had assumed, but the little bit of gray sea between them. Then I told you I was actually the entire Arctic Ocean sometimes.
“The Things That Surround Us” from The Man Suit by Zachary Schomburg (Black Ocean, 2007). Reprinted with permission from Zachary Schomburg. Poem also appeared in DIAGRAM.
ZACHARY SCHOMBURG is the author of The Man Suit (Black Ocean 2007), Scary, No Scary (Black Ocean 2009), a dvd collection of poem-films, Little Blind Thing (Poor Claudia 2010), and several small press chapbooks including, most recently, From the Fjords (Spork Press 2010) and a trilogy of collaborations with Emily Kendal Frey. With Mathias Svalina he co-edits Octopus Magazine and Octopus Books. He lives in Portland, Or.