the view is barely clear 
   from depoe bay today 	
   as i lean precariously 
against cyclone screened rails  
hurling popcorn 
  at seagull squalls 
   sweet buttered and salted 
they float for a second 
  against a belligerent headwind, 
to explode, 
       freed finally,
   like fragmented ideas
     in a schizophrenic mind,
   only to be snatched 
  in a feeding frenzy
   of dirty white wings

     apparently not all sharks
   lurk beneath the rolling green

the stairway behind,
   carved in weathered stone
 fern lined, up and down trodden
  lays in deceptive treachery
for the restless feet of children
to be the first to slip a
sweaty quarter in a 
   binocular slot
     await the jackpot sighting
of humpbacked whales sighing,
  sea-lions mating along
    foam-kissed crags,
or whiskered otters, 
smashing urchins on their bellies.

slick misted, chilled to the bone
  my hands close in on themselves
seek a pale cloud breath,
   a shade of warmth
but the cold is a healing element
     or so i've been told.

still, as i grow older,
    the chill grows colder
and not as quick to flee
   when confronted by the heat
      of a friendly fire.

and i wonder what the child sees
  his nose smashed against the
    gunmetal grey box
as tiny hands surround him
  with cries of my turn…
knotting into the churning tide
  and selfish seagull cries.

certainly not the thick clouds
  exercising their early evening
northwest prerogative
 in bulging, red-eyed indecision

red skies at night,
       sailor's delight
red skies at morning,
      sailors take warning.

   i'm sure he only sees
a vast nimbus of possibilities
   in a pink-stained sky.

- jonah s fenn ca. 1998

Published by Jonah Sheridan Fenn

Nerd herder, word wrangler, working on the next chapter...

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