Tourists we are, most of us,
even the locals,
who walk out to the sea
and maybe dip in up to our ankles,
let the mystery finger our little bones,
or maybe we dive deep
and let the unseen breathe us in,
or sail far, under the sound only
of wind and unknowing.
Still, what do we know
of this vastness that birthed us?
How can we begin to say a word
of the great undersea mountains
and rivers, the creatures there
larger and darker than our dreams,
how can we pretend, but only
bring home a shell, a little sand dollar,
hollow and curious,
barely whispering of the real life
whose actual skeleton it was,
little grey thing on the dresser?
Every prayer, every conversation
is a postcard from the real place,
a memory of the time
we dipped our feet
in the immense, murmuring water,
the silence wave after wave
reaching out for us.
August 21, 2019