Mudlark No. 63 (2017)

						                    Full moon

		                 rises over eastern hills — yellow, stained 
	  red-orange — 
			   leftover from Halloween — 
    		  shines off shreds of a pink plastic bowl,
				   blue latex glove, charred wood. So many Things
   cast onto the tide line. 
		                              				     A black dog writhes 
	in a waterlogged glory-pile of popweed-wrapped branches.

	          The red-stained beach, so familiar, reminds me of high desert’s 
							                  orange stone, curling 
into itself at sunset (iron braided through white sand). Oval shadows 
		                                           where wind-and-water dipped, sculpted 
			a fish mouth (pattern 
					      from which fish mouths were made). But here, 

water, water, everywhere — beautiful/terrible joke to my desert eyes —
	         from concrete pipes onto the beach, cutting overlapping paths 
							            through mud. A drift log

		       mimics a seal, the body of a small black whale: 
				                scattered god of detritus, shape-shifter. . .

	    What’s the prayer here?

					          Put the stone in your mouth.  

Christien Gholson  | Tidal Flats 5
Contents | Mudlark No. 63 (2017)