water crashes on high-tide shores

stirring sand and seaweed

long after yesterday’s storm

rain’s drizzle dampens driftwood forts

resurrected again and again

by children

you and me

a lifetime ago


where stingray

sailing beneath the surf

fly gracefully together

toward sand bars of calm

a gathering of family

you and you and you and me

a lifetime ago


little blue penguin footprints

trace out from burrows

disappear into water

on instinct

to provide

for their offspring

you and me and we

a lifetime ago


I can’t tell you of the sorrow

I felt today

when I looked into that ocean

and did not see a stingray

there were no webbed-foot

depressions in the sand

no scurrying of little penguin feet

telling a story of a life

your life

my life

long ago


this is the same ocean

there is nothing that separates

those creatures from me

but a distance of waves

a passage of sea

but my heart is stretched

and torn across hemispheres

by you and our kids and me

a lifetime


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