Near the Ocean

Three pillows, end on end, rolled in a daybed blanket,
define the space between us.

You no longer care to breathe me in,
share the taste of my day,
while I ache for the salt slick of your skin,
the stress of contact.

I watch the ebb and flow of your breathing,
the swell of your chest over shipwreck-ribs.

Your spine describes a strange path
climbing to an unfamiliar place,
the taut skin stretched like sails
gathering the breeze.

Tomorrow I will wake becalmed –
strikeout for shore on the spring tide.

Somewhere, as the breakers fade behind,
I may find your footprint soft in plush and,
as I lay my head on your empty pillow,
I swear I’ll hear the ocean.


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