Once upon a time, began the old tale,
and that's how we knew it was a tale. Shackleton's
fare-thee-well voyage, ship marooned in ice

until the hull cracked like matchsticks,
crew booting a soccer ball across the shelf.
The photographer tilted his Hash pots to catch

hoarfrost on the rigging. We splay our fingers
over their mute images, a century later,
knowing their fate as they could not,

as others will know our fates, though we cannot.
More tragicomedy than tragedy, unlike Franklin
starving with his crew, Hudson and his boy adrift.