Night beach, a calm spell
in the gathering winter: the air
is almost clear, moist, opens
my skin, and all old grief
comes up, not out. I had thought
to set sail by now, be beyond
the first breakers, seeking
the moon, not so alone.
In spring we tried to raise
the white cloth, be cloud
catching wind. It was yards
beyond our grasp, we got lost
in the shrouds, confused hands
crossed. As the sun fell down
the sky we crawled out
from under, sand-scattered.
Now the light is partial,
behind flushed with blood
from the City, West over water
cold and clear, but only
for silhouette, for nameless shape
against the sea:
woman, man and dog
walking the edge, and out
beyond the islands a few boats
rocking on the swell.


                                         21 Dec 70