Today's poem is by Emily Wolahan

Embleton Bay

This incredible wager of better

sets off the campaign; its brightness burns

out the edges, splits itself as long tracks

of seawater finger the beach, then unite.

The vacation homes on the bluff

spread their empty approach over rain,

severing clouds.

                              Often the size of things

confuses me. Some appear hideous,

engorged like painted balloons,

their faces stretched so far the colors

pale. We find ourselves standing

on dank sand, sinking and silent. How old

it all looks. The light somehow abandoned

post-apocalypse. The architectural features

bred between wars.

                                      I will climb inside

the bristles of that bare bright hedge

and winter until a swimming-pool-blue


Then I'll unpack.

                              Some kelp has clumped on the sand,

the moat around it deepening as the sea

retreats. Tendrils fanned, its glisten

bodily and internal. We can try.

And the payoff increases and the loss.

We follow a path into the dune grass—

Oh, motley solutions, tools, promises:

you are holding back the sea.

Copyright © 2012 Emily Wolahan All rights reserved
from The National Poetry Review
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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