John Nimmo


Galleons sailing the squares
of latitude and longitude, they cross
the sidewalk, elongated, eyes
to the fore. Their taut muscularity
pulls brown shells
that imperceptibly wobble
as they race to safe soil.

I could crush one underfoot.
Mangled cells of mollusk
would writhe as my walking
grinds them onto concrete
and into the leather pores of my sole.

Some steps on, I would cease
to stain the ground. If tomorrow
I take off my shoes and look,
two soles buffed smooth—
by the streets, carpets, linoleum halls,
and garden paths
of my life—would bear no trace
to tell which killed the snail.

Date of Birth: July 15, 1953
Location: Mountain View, California
Occupation: Physicist/Earth Scientist
Publications: Rattle, Snakeskin, Sidereality, Poetalk, Electric Acorn, etc.
Awards: First Prize for Rhymed Verse, Foster City International Writers Contest, 2003

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