by the sea, something new

Strathmere 2014 - Conch shell

I spent this week by the ocean listening to the whoosh of a new story.

Of houses, big and small and just right.  Of family, then and now.

I walked to find the rhythm of the words, and scribbled down their shell-like fragments.

Of the past and the future. Of tradition and change. 

I read about the shaping of memoir and about the history of the place we’ve been coming to for years.

Of why we keep returning. Of what we seek. 

Dear waves, what will you do for me this year?
Will you drown out my scream?
Will you let me rise through the fog?
Will you fill me with that old salt feeling?
Will you let me take my long steps in the cold sand?
Will you let me lie on the white bedspread and study
the black clouds with the blue holes in them?
Will you let me see the rusty trees and the old monoplanes one more year?
Will you still let me draw my sacred figures
and move the kites and the birds around with my dark mind?

Lucky life is like this. Lucky there is an ocean to come to.
Lucky you can judge yourself in this water.
Lucky you can be purified over and over again.
Lucky there is the same cleanliness for everyone.
Lucky life is like that. Lucky life. Oh lucky life.
Oh lucky lucky life. Lucky life.

from “Lucky Life” by Gerald Stern

 

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