Spring 1989 • Vol. XI No. 2 PoetryApril 1, 1989 |

Poem on My Birthday

I At times in the night the lips of the continents collide and rise and then withdraw, leaving halved spirals of nautiloids, sheared corals, the raw hole opening as in the tenderest centers of our throats. Between this coastal stone and that distant one erupt bright sprays of schoolfish, while here in the beach sand are handprints, deep at the fingertips, herethe beautiful compressions of knees, scuffle and trough of instep, a broken trail of sand beads where water runneled from a belly's midline, and fell.In the loose sand beyond the scatters of wrack and shell, the track disappears, and there is nothing to show who might have risen to his feet to walk or run before that wind into this windlessness. II By first light the pines struck down into the meadow. An hour before clouds had been heavy, but then the grass began to flicker between green and gray, the clouds to deform and disappear, and from the incandescent line of the horizon proceeded a smo

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