Today's poem is by Adam Vines

"La mar es una puta"

Beside the landing, a driftwood cross refuses to age.
the tide is moving in. A sheet of fiddler crabs
wrinkles and sags, unfolds and folds across the sand.
The water boils with herring fry, a city's worth

of wishes, tossed dimes. Seagulls drop, spreading like napkins.
A woman collecting conchs and whelks in a white bucket
maroons herself on a bar. Her husband, a volunteer
for the state, pulls down his mask: "I told you so," he yells,

before he wades to help her in. He's been belt-sanding
"some dirty words in Spanish" from the pavilion eaves.
A half a century ago, sloops, schooners anchored
this horizon. Cuban spongers in dinghies drifted out

of this shallow cove with the tide, the orange sun melting
into white breakers before them, sky inflamed, inflamed.

Copyright © 2012 Adam Vines All rights reserved
from The Coal Life
University of Arkansas Press
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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