Wednesday, 9 October 2019


by Virginia McIntyre

Sea water sweeps
the slender spit
where you stand

in the shallow warm swill
of the estuary. The weight
of atmosphere presses

against your body
burrows beneath your skin
into every pore

infusing a birdness
in your collarbone
a treeness in your spine.

Bird calls
in your palms.

You are inside the keer
of a hawk and the skirl
of an eagle greeting its young.
You move through
a membrane of time
through a swarm of sounds

the sea hissing across sand
small waves unfurling
along the shoreline

a low gurgle
in the throat of the river
a rattle of pebbles
clattering beneath foam

air popping
in a retreating froth
the breath of barnacles.

Time goes by before you notice
the humming. Humming shells
humming your spirit

into the small and intimate
into a colony of life
in sediments of moss
seaweed and silt.

Your eyes dissolve
your body
into the footprints
of a merganser

and you know
what it is to dive
for food with
your serrated beak.

Your bathe in the wake
of a green winged teal
in its silver script
of awareness

you call prayer.

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