Monday, March 10, 2014

Poem: Instructions for Finding Frosted Glass at the Beach

Instructions for Finding Frosted Glass at the Beach

The glass is commonly found in the middle rocks
at the edge of the high-tide wash
an hour before sunset in fall
when the waves are beginning to churn

Walk easy, look hard, but
not so hard that you can’t hear the ocean

The best are found alone
on plains of wet sand teased by the breakers
Keep your gaze to the sun and
watch for them flashing
guitar-pick chinks of white, green, brown
the rare and lovely blue
stitching your pockets, scraping as you walk

Take five minutes to watch the sun fall away
this will cost you the green and the brown
which turn in the gloaming to coal-dark lumps
but the clear is still a possibility
even, occasionally, in moonlight
so long as you ignore the
triangular fragments of mussel-shell

Remember that your quarry lies in a middle ground
that these fallen stars come not from
beauty but from someone
throwing litter on a beach

Do not feel the need to restock
this will be done for you

First published in Parting Gifts
(Greensboro, North Carolina)

Photo by MJV

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