geology for doomies

the lazy poet shops for words in the index of GEOLOGY FOR DUMMIES
and “subduction” really grabs
it sounds a lot like “seduction”
and there’s a poem or two in that alone

but “extinction” then grabs
and doesn’t want to let go
and he’s dragged kicking and screaming
into the fossil record and evolution and tectonic shenanigans

and the poet learns that “How old is the sea floor?” is a trick question
that new floor is being poured 24/7/52/4.3 bill
and old floor sometimes rises in the ring of fire and elsewhere
or scrunches
or becomes crestfallenly entrenched
or is seductively subducted by the shovel-shoving landmasses

and then there is a blinding flash of the not-quite-obvious
in that “geology” means “study of the earth”
means
“study of everything from the solid core
to the liquid overcore
to the only-a-little-bit-liquid mantle
to the mantle-crust interface
to the crust to the surfaces sea and land to the air to the air-space interface
to heaven whence come the doomsday-making comets”

and the poet feels like the kid in james joyce’s “araby”
a pretender/fake/chicanerist/wanter
and reading 306 of the 320-plus pages hasn’t helped

much

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