This is how you and I liked our beach –
a squelching stretch too cold and dark
for screeching radios and squealing kids –
just steady wind and a slow systolic beat
from somewhere beyond the known
horizon, where moving air stirs
a slumbering sea whose heavy breath
arrives with a rolling crump like
cannon fire too distant to do us harm.
Yet the tide of human care seems
always ebbing, ebbing, as if the edge
of everything were created only to be
eroded away. While I invigilate the dark,
the surf, once our lingua franca, is mine
alone, a flat patois of cold indifference.
First Published in Envoi © David Olsen 2011