At Shark Reef Sanctuary

Eva Alice Counsell

 
Only seagulls surround us
balanced
on their parameter of hunger,
and seals
who in their soft-body swim
roll onto the rocks
to stretch their skin
to infinite edges.
They lie about
like sleeping infants.
If there are sharks
they swim beneath sight.
The water
slides by undisturbed
and the cold sun slips
through a seam in the clouds.
Persistent wind
like a child's wailing
cramps our fingers
intertwined like nest twigs.
The picnic, pocketed into parts,
will wait.
We will be as those seals,
full-fat on ocean air
and lying
beneath the cloud shift
until the tidemark
measures the horizon
and our huddled bodies
take the shape of stones.
 
Published by The Midwest Quarterly, 2003. Copyright © 1999 by Eva Alice Counsell. Used with permission. All rights reserved.

Further Reading

Poems about Sharks
Angel Shark
by Hailey Leithauser
Ants and Sharks
by Tomasz Rózycki
Ashore
by Ernest Hilbert
Beach Walk
by Henri Cole
Coffee and Oranges
by Joel Brouwer
Flying Fish: An Ode [excerpt]
by Charles Wharton Stork
Haunted Seas
by Cale Young Rice
I Wonder What It Feels Like to be Drowned?
by Robert Graves
In a Breath
by Carl Sandburg
Inheritance of Waterfalls and Sharks
by Martín Espada
Murray Dreaming
by Stephen Edgar
No Place Like Home
by Stephen Cushman
Ode on Dictionaries
by Barbara Hamby
Plague of Dead Sharks
by Alan Dugan
Rome
by Brigit Pegeen Kelly
Seal Lullaby
by Rudyard Kipling
Sharks in the Rivers
by Ada Limón
Sharks' Teeth
by Kay Ryan
Shoal of Sharks
by Richard O'Connell
Song of the Paddlers [excerpt]
by Herman Melville
Submarine Mountains
by Cale Young Rice
Summer [excerpt]
by James Thomson
The Bluefish
by Isaac McLellan
The Maldive Shark
by Herman Melville
The Ripple Effect
by Jamey Dunham
The Sea is History
by Derek Walcott
The Shark
by Lord Alfred Douglas
The Shark
by Judith Beveridge
The Shark
by Isaac McLellan
The Shark
by William Henry Venable
The Shark's Parlor
by James Dickey
The Sharks
by Denise Levertov
The Sirens
by James Russell Lowell
The Steel Rippers
by Patricia Carlin
Tiger Shark
by Hailey Leithauser
Untitled [There, by the crescent moon, the shark]
by Shido
Upon Shark
by Robert Herrick
What To Do About Sharks
by Vivian Shipley
White Sales
by Allen Grossman
World Below the Brine
by Walt Whitman