The Baths Bones
For the Sutro Baths, Golden Gate National Recreation Area
You must have been a temple to ecstasy
for ancient nine year olds
a palace of jaguars and totem poles,
mummies, pirate jewels, jungle plants
and seven swimming pools
decked head to toe in double dog dares
like swing rings, toboggan slides,
springboards, platforms and pulleys,
metal and concrete,
slippery steps, barriers barred
and no one to tell you NO.
In a grand gesture of irony
your opulent pools would vanish in flames.
Land use laws and decades pass.
The ocean heaves and sighs
and knocks persistent.
Both leave your open sun-bleached ribs
sticking through the sand.
In a flash, I pass through this holy place
chasing friends and seagulls.
We have come to storm this castle
of broken pipe and rebar,
cross shifting dunes, climb stairs to the sky
and conquer the ice plant mountains.
We are still nine and spectacle ready,
a rite for your bones.
Against aging and erosion
we are here, and you are ready,
offering the sublime
while daring the sand
to swallow us whole.