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Pemaquid Day

You’re only allowed to feel the cooling breeze
if you hear the ocean come ashore.
Find the places where the sea crawls,
insinuating itself between the rocks,
a shy but eager child
looking for a place to rest.
Find the places where the sea demands attention,
chisels the stone like a sculptor
so used to his work
that the blows are unconscious.

It’s that time of day
when the sky and sea
are the same color,
the clouds are islands,
and you can’t be sure
you’re not driving down
into the sky.

The stars are profuse tonight,
faint and brilliant,
they make a contour map of the sky.
You can reach out
and feel textures,
touch the light cotton
of the Milky Way
and prick your finger
on carnelian Mars.

Maine Sculpture

The striations in the stone,
their roughness to the touch,
make the rocks a sensual thing,
neither male nor female.
The very cracks in the granite
make it harder, sharper,
and I want to add
the sweat of my fingers
to the centuries’ salt water,
not to destroy,
but to take part in its shaping.

Marble

The line between sea and sky
blurs in the fog.
Beyond the jade foam
and ivory spray,
beyond the marble, flexing
muscles of the ocean,
the world drops away
into cold grey chaos.

This is the might
of the heart of the world,
thrusting fingers older
than Neptune
into the shore,
scratching with ancient fingernails
to make impressions
on the back of Mother Earth

making ridges in the rock
marking where time
will join them again
and again.
Here lies the birth and death
of each tiny life.
Here is all that remains
of history.