5.22.2008

What Remains


We found the bones on the beach—
blanketed with gray feathers,
hollow like drinking straws.
Overhead the late gull’s children
mourned relentlessly. The carcass,
stripped as it was by crabs and wind,
was not new.
The waves crept closer. With a snap
you split the wings, a ragged break
down the brittle breastbone.
You sent one wing to sea. The other
capped a driftwood crucifix,
the waterlogged wood dripping
with kelp and spinning shells.
My numb fingers traced the tracks I knew
in the sand. A pile of cold stones
for ink, shifting shoreline
the blank page.
Your wings departed, but I stood
by my word. Six letters in the sand:
remain.

3 comments:

Kate Horowitz said...

Big hearts for Sally Mann and her impossibly beautiful and chilling work, including her book What Remains. Once you've seen it it never really leaves you.

Adam said...

that first picture is amazing

Kate Horowitz said...

Isn't it? If I remember correctly, there was no setup for that shot--the bones are arranged exactly as we found them. I think Cass took this photo.

When do I get to come see your new fancy NYC digs?


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