coastal plumbing

the full moon is a few days passed, 
emphatic ocean swells in its following love.
morning brings an exposing low tide, 
sea star and urchin, anemone and abalone. 
clinging to the shock of water shorn rock, they wait unhurriedly.
you live in a perched cabin near the edge of an island. 
the cabin is not connected to a sewer line, 
its toilet instead incinerating all that it receives. 
toddling along morning’s low-tide shoreline, you search for abalone. 
the air fecund with ocean, glint of salt and sparkle of brine. 
in coastal air, eddies of incinerating waste’s peculiar aroma swirl and drift. 
you set mind’s clock to the slow rush of incoming tide,
while searching butter knife’d for surprising spiral of abalone shell. 
a quick slip and a twist with dull knife, 
abalone pried from rock, 
and soft underside exposes. 
you wonder what is most relatable 
to those who’s eyes ply the waters of these moon haunted words. 
is it the stumbling search for marine mollusk, 
on rock risen and shattered shoreline?
or the smell of burning human waste, 
incongruous in supple Summer air?

tide’s return re-covers those who its departure exposed.
a radiant misting from cloud’s expansive embrace
overtakes. sea-spray regains its place 
in your nose, sharp, cool. it sighs 
into fine powder on your skin.

Published by Zak

an intertidal island in an ocean of impermanence.

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