Fangs in the stewing pot chatter on the boil
the body has slid from every bone
I eat cat – gristle, rib and jaw
killed in a sack, against a wall
and tough as a lesson.
The Atlantic comes in all colours
a roll cage of plastic
picked up by confused beaks
has hollowed its way back to the tide.
Furniture padding hits the beach
amputated by the waves
licking the shore
the tongue of a rotting whale sings.
Crabs commit themselves to the surf
racing from gaps in the sand
if the moon is up without cloud, teasing the equator
they’ll stand and wait.
Children organise bludgeoning raids
swinging personalised sticks sideways
beer in hand, I listen to tiny backs crack
before the sea gets them safe.
Some are found blue
fishing boats are split in two
yanks of tide treat all swimmers the same
they become guardians of the undertow.
unparented, from their shallow graves
returning as discoloured shells
to become ornament, powder, or charm.
strike out bold as bolts in my eyes
with the swell eating the clouds
hours wash by
they return old, on bodyboards.
Night closes the lid on it all
I stand at the waterline
a frail sail of moon-pulled pores
and everything eaten in a day.