Beach Walk: 1912


Beach Walk: 1912

    With respect to Walt Whitman’s
Song of Myself:36

Line of cottages white as sea-foam
near beach plums grow row by row
planted over formless bodies
they do sow.  Roots of bone
and soil of blood
the rain-split screams of men dying
so alone

Crash of waves and wails of
dying children so idly mix
between the sandy shore and sea
To think of slicing knives and
wounded soldiers  with
forsaken pleas, so gently
whispers desperately.

The cut-out stars
glanced down off bayonet
or shimmering metal
observed in stony
silence desolate
Flesh and bone sewn
like poppies-knit by knit.

The soft humming of the sea
the voice of guns in such
stark harmony
Old men and the young
together
Sedgy pine and salted grass
wafting from the sea
In such rare and longing
matrimony

Wars that I have seen
and paths I have trod alike
In farce or  tragedy the same
- a single glean
the pillaging of life and
man
Is all- that I have seen.

Line of cottages white as sea-foam
near beach plums grow row by row
planted over formless bodies—
they do sow.