perhaps the sea

perhaps the sea 1920 1440 Chris Wheeler

Foaming and violent as the wave,
we echo of beatings taken
on shores unknown or known
too well. The sea is as young as it is sage,
as seasoned in relief as in spite, splitting
sand and salt asunder in its desperate
grasp for land. Within our breasts beat
echoes of land taken kernel by
kernel, we know not
where, we know not
when, we know naught,
lest we see.

Leagues and knots,

leagues and knots rattle, leagues and knots
roll beneath us, scraping our hulls, lulling us,
pulling parabola ripples back
and forth and back, forth
to conquer back, forth
to falling back, forth
to back, and finally forth. We are
parabolic too.

The sea and sky are

each inside the other, entwined,
boiling as aquamarine, fallible,
flawed and two things at once:
one new thing. The oldest things,
perhaps, the deepest things,
perhaps, fail us at the moment
of resurgence, for they shift
beneath our feet and we are walking
on air with our heads in the ocean.
The upside will be down, on all sides
sea as far as the eye, on every side be-
ings of import and export believe. We are

waves and sand and sea and sky,
grey and blue and green and black,
and one day there will no more of us,
(by virtue or valor, the earth will be full
of us), and the sky will consume
the sea and send it (back and forth)
on the wind as judgment and serene

On that day,

may we drink deep of the salt-
less nectar of clouds, may we
inhabit mist in memoriam of who
we were, may we wash mountain
peaks and greenify gardens, and
revel in the rivulets. Be still
with me, and feel the beating
of the back-forth, the fullness
of a pregnant horizon. Know
the frailty of sand and time.
Place your hand
in mine

and evaporate.

Header photograph © Jason D. Ramsey.

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