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Marigondon Beach
By Miguel Barretto García


At midday when the sun is caking the sand

and skin, the beachfront gathers the sound

from the sea and it is almost certain, we are

hearing the boat singing about its wreckage.


Forgetting to bring sun-block, I am sitting there

watching my own wreckage. On the sandy shore,

the boat is about to dock only to be carried back

by the tides. Like a leaf surfing along infinite water,


I simply surrendered. How brave those children

wading in the water. Despite green seaweed

tentacles and minefields of urchins, they are water,

one with the ocean. Skin only standing in between.


Perhaps, it is necessity. I have been sitting on the shore

for nearly all my life for the bow to kiss the blue sand,

watching for the wait to turn into an arm and a eulogy.

I am a lettered bottle: bruised, but ready for the carrying.


How small is memory that it is bottled up and baked

in the sun until the trauma is the clearest glass

shard. I carry the tides’ whisper in me. Like a conch shell,

I make language around it. I hear all of her secrets.


All of her wishes on a bottle floating on an endless sea

of possibility. An astronaut of this shore, she sends back

messages about the world beneath her feet and Western

Union transfers. I am listening to the ocean whispering


this evening about sinking feet. When I comb my hair

with my fingers to expose the scalp, I am parting the sea,

a mother and her child. Shipwreck is a little more than

a scab: What is it outer there that is more precious than me?

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