When the big one hits, my boats
will be poised to transport passengers
from mainland California to the massive
wedge that falls off into the Pacific Ocean.
Every structure on the new island
will be broken at first from the seismic
whiplash, but I’ll float construction supplies
out there over the yet-unnamed
dividing body of water. They will rebuild
even while developers scrap each other
and scramble to sell the extra oceanfront.
I expect the waterway we cross
won’t exceed a mile or two. At first.
Once we build our ferry docks
and clear the created harbors of debris
service will run several times daily.
My neighbors will quit laughing
at the guy whose fleet is stationed
on blocks east of Palm Springs today.
Those desert dwellers will get on-board
with the sudden maritime opportunities.
When the state’s largest cities
relocate in place, seaward between here
and perhaps the Bering Strait,
folks will notice the captain
whose routes are their best way between
the land that swiftly travels elsewhere
and the bedrock continent that stays.


Todd Mercer was nominated for Best of the Net in 2018. His chapbook, Life-wish Maintenance is readable at Right Hand Pointing. Recent work appears in: Eunoia ReviewThe Lake, Mojave River Review, and Praxis.

Image Banner: nate2b via Flickr Creative Commons