A lady leans slowly back and forth
in a rocking chair, her silver hair
catching the boldness of the sea breeze;
the gray strands sway to the whistle of the air
through the dunes, coached with the saltiness
of the late August atmosphere.
Staring out across miles of endless ocean,
she watches as the boats sail by in swift circles,
the currents luring them in wild loops.
Her eyes are fixed for hours until you call her name.
As her face assumes the shape of a brittle smile,
she’ll explain she was only admiring the courage
of the wind and the vessels, so strong and assuring;
And she’ll continue to rock like the boats
bobbing about in the waves, telling secrets of the sea.
She is sure the water goes on for miles.
It does not stop for anyone, she whispers,
even when the gusts die down and there are no ships.
You can see her sitting like stone on these calm days,
the air saturated in silence; her breath a replica of the wind
which grows faint in the prime of the afternoon.
Deep blue of the ocean in her eyes, the spark fades.\
Time slowly passes by.
*Originally published in elephant tree, a publication of Chapman University