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September 24, 2016

You stood on ocean’s edge and watched the gulls,
the only movement in a late September
sky: a matte grey, featureless expanse.
At least the ocean, also grey, had life:
it licked the painted shore and glittered in
the gemstone beach. You knelt above the line
the water lapped and hooked your hair behind
an ear as, leaning down, it threatened to
become a veil. You put your palm against
the sand and curled your fingers, drawing dry
sea earth into your fist. You straightened, pulled
your hand up to your chest, and opened it.
The sand sieved out, each grain between your fingers
lost, and overwhelmed when it found land.
A strand of hair escaped your ear, encouraged
by a breeze that found the final grains
upon your hand and coaxed them off, your fingers
closing just a second late to save
them. Something pricked your skin. Surprised, you opened
up your hand again, revealing in
your palm a polished piece of ocean glass,
too large to sieve through fingers and too heavy
to be blown away by wind.

My love,
hold onto me and I will never leave.

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