“Uisge Beatha”

The person you love is 72.8% water. ~Alan Fletcher

The tide has gone out again, revealing long strips of darkened beach
Chipped and scarred by the wind’s rough tongue along shell-soaked ground
Whispering orisons and slanders into the empty dips and swells
Shredded kelp unceremoniously tossed in a heap on the rocks

Chapped lips
Grains of sand

Far and distant, the roar of the primal stirrings beneath the waves
Edges twisting in savage pleasure
Rushing toward the crashing point
The opening of the floodgates
Collapsing in on itself
Like Ophelia’s last gasp within her lover’s arms


A gentle rise and fall of the chest, of the sea
Salty-slick and cool after the fevered peak
Eyes reflecting crests of foam in the lamplight
The echo of the surging water flows in the veins
Pools in the hollows where passion sleeps
Dreaming of its violent release, its gentle end

And in the darkness
The siren starts to sing
The tempest passing into memory
Fading as the tide comes in

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