In the Stoneworks

In the Stoneworks

In the Stoneworks

In the Stoneworks


The Sea Shines

The sea shines. Wind-raked, the waters run light

strand by strand. Wind-plowed, they fold

light into the furrows. Wind-winnowed, they toss

spume ends; and rainbows and the ghosts

of rainbows leap, drift fading across an

enormous look, like breath at the poles.

All burning in motion. All sanctioned and told.

All sent of the creature's warmth in the world's cold.

The sea shines. Tremulous over its crushing hunch

to the world's end, it shakes the entire

tree of light to the sky-top, and the gulls

blow off like leaves that seem never to land

but to catch fire in air and be wholly consumed --

all back to fire and air before

they can take weight and fall. A day,

another day, burns upward in the great eye, and away.

It takes a god to say "the sea shines" each first time

into the day, as his eye goes, thought by thought

before him, calling forth from lead-deeps and blazings,

from far-silver and shore-mica, imagination

by imagination, the dazzle

of what will be sung and sung, age by age,

man by man, of the god in him, as each

stands churned in his lit veins on his lit beach.

The man stands in god's place on that shore,

opening the eye there is --

man's, god's, or beast's -- for seeing the world lit

in the wind from origin. "The sea shines,"

he says, and a god could say no more,

having once begun entirely to imagine

by what world he stands, in the pour

of what abundance, on what hammered shore.

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