Empty hours
till we touched.

Days dragged our feet
in seaweeds. Stretched
on the same lonely beach, lying
like two close stones;
sun's warmth walled
between us, sandy battlements,
our fingers searching
for embrasures.

Awkward gull,
afraid you'd crush
with a clumsy peck;
me, half-buried shell, scared
I might sing ocean.
Our chests rose and set
with waves and sun. We
lapped at each other all night.

Now, dried
and salted, the brine's
sunk me deep, breeze's
torn you away.
With one tidal swell
you could swoop me up
to breathe seas
to your ear.

1982 John Goss