Brother piles sand on his pregnant girlfriend’s belly.
On her sandy stomach I draw a belly button. Soon it will be dusk
and the last surfers in the distance will disappear
from this winter beach. We find ourselves here in a cove beneath
the sway of palm trees; we find ourselves here marked
by a place named beautiful in an old language that knows
the sound the creek makes as it flows into the Pacific; we find
ourselves here as family, me on vacation from college and them
on vacation from a grit city, a rough-necked inland place of splintering
concrete. Soon, but not yet First Son will be born,
face brown and smooth as a well-washed stone. I try to catch
a wave – this moment with my feet, don’t want it to go because
I want more of this, to wolf down a place, the blue
inside of me. Hide in the slope of this crescent
beach, far away from Bullet. We can keep
our secrets here, in the tar that stains our feet black.
We are not a delicate people, don’t mind the stain
of ocean. The tide will rise with the moon but I am not ready to leave;
toes curling against sand. Later we fall asleep to waves but awaken
to the rude sounds of the metro link reminding us this refuge is only temporary.