Spring 1998 • Vol. XX No. 2 PoetryApril 1, 1998 |

Evolution

Lambertsbaii, South Africa, 1992 A girl scoops up a barnacle still sealed, sleek as a liver, glossy-black. Her fingers trace its ear-like curve, wrench it open. Down the beach, shell-pink children wade through tidepools, lift long flamingo legs over kinked ropes of seaplants shining with tide-froth, over unhinged barnacles, deep bruises on the sand. She drops the shell-winged body foaming to the beach benchmarked by the tide's endless starting over, erasing the margin of regret. Yesterday I saw nothing but fog, the last wintry breath of every creature on earth or all the dead risen, clouding the blue mirror held over the pale lip of sand. Or the barrier of my own breath, that pearl wall. She drifts until the cloud of her body dissolves into sand. Until we are not this skin, not flesh tangled with fishing-line nerves, feathery weeds of blood, but petrified foam drifting the tongue of rock alive with birds, pale cape gannets, dark cormorants,

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Photo of Sandra Meek

Sandra Meek is the author of six books of poems, most recently Still (Persea Books, 2020), named a New & Noteworthy Poetry Book by The New York Times Book Review. A recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts Literature Fellowship in Poetry and the Lucille Medwick Memorial Award from the Poetry Society of America, she has three times been awarded Georgia Author of the Year in Poetry and twice the Peace Corps Writers Award in Poetry. Dana Professor of English, Rhetoric, and Writing at Berry College, Meek is also poetry editor of the Phi Kappa Phi Forum.

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The Scarlet Macaw

By Sandra Meek

Lambertsbaii, South Africa, 1992 A girl scoops up a barnacle still sealed, sleek as a liver, glossy-black. Her fingers trace its ear-like curve, wrench it open. Down the beach, shell-pink […]

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