Artifact

 

I kneel and cock
my head like Buddy does
when I say walk.
The underbelly
of a guitar fish
resembles something
from outer space.
I stack yellow cockles,
Pacific poker chips.
Skip a porpoise’s
bleached spinal disc
through heavy swell.
Rusty knuckles
from rotten shipwrecks.
Bolts unscrewed
by slow fingers of water.
Here you’ll struggle
to find traces of me. The me
you think know, anyhow.
Salt soaks into my roots.
My mouth unfurls
a hymn that repeats
in my head. Bear you on
the breath of dawn, make
you to shine like the sun.
It’s the end of something—
blows like a trumpet,
a surrender to the dunes.
Then dusk and your bones
catch fire. You surrender
to the tear of plastic teeth.
The worn out zipper
of our two-person REI tent.
My shadow is thirty feet long.
My shadow, last to touch you.

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