Footprints In the Bath

By Peter Halstead

Tiny bits of wool and lint
Leave their shady fingerprint

On the bottom of the tub,
Where Platonic shadows dub

From the surface of the bath
A rolling underwater path

Of DNA-like lines and blots,
The filmy subatomic plots

And subtly trembling polygraph
Of the soapy water’s math,

Where the linens of the posh
Come to pieces in the wash,

Drowning parts of clothes that bare
The universe’s underwear,

Miming chains of molecules
Which our shedding epidermis fuels,

Making up the whole from parts,
From a hair extruding hearts,

The world’s emerging gelatin
Developed from a piece of skin

Where the Ivory sun is swirled
From a superficial underworld

The essence of all things small or solar
Dancing lightly in the Kohler.

March 27th, 2000