Monday, April 18, 2011

One Day Before the Tide Changed

He walked along the rocks
in the cool spring air,
ignoring the wind in his hair,
and how it tugged on his clothes.
He stopped to scratch his nose
and looked out over the horizon,
to where the sea met the sky,
and watched.

As he listened to the waves
and the seabirds crying
as they circled, flying
almost out of sight
he did not know why
he felt so restless -
the day left him breathless,
captured by the old magic
of wind and wave and light.

He thought for a moment
of his garden and his books
and the way his wife looks
when he talks of poetry,
and thought about Prufrock,
who talked of mermaids in the sea,
and fog and things that would not be,
and wondered about tomorrow.

Turning to go,
he did not see the shadowed shape
run her comb one last time
while he recited a hopeless rhyme
through perfect green hair,
then slip off the rocks into the sea
pondering the unknown mystery
of land and tree and earth,
the strange songs only humans sang.

They both went on their way,
he to the land, she to the bay
back to their ordinary lives
touched by the shoreline's magic.

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