Cabo De Gata, December

Cabo De Gata, December

Kercheval, Jesse Lee

for Leon-Paul Fargue

In vain, the waves come from

Africa to kiss your feet.

You draw them back

always in time.

You talk: I talk.

No one is listening.

I am choosing rocks

to take home

as gifts. I would cry

but this sea

has enough salt.

I find a rock shaped

like a heart but do not

choose it. Who would

I give it to but you?

You fill your pockets

with broken glass

worn by the sea

to green jewels.

So like you to find

emeralds where I find

cheap souvenirs.

I notice your nose

is dusted with sand

& when I brush it

you don’t flinch.

Maybe we will go home together.

Maybe we wiU so on waging

like this side by side

even if we are not touching.

It is winter. I have never seen

a beach so empty.

I want to say-we could run,

but where would we hide?

JESSE LEE KERCHEVAL’S second poetry book, Dog Angel, is forthcoming from the University of Pittsburgh Press. The University of Wisconsin Press has just reissued her novel The Museum of Happiness and her writing text Building Fiction. She teaches creative writing at the University of Wisconsin, where she directs the Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing.

Copyright New England Review Winter 2003

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