Twenty Minutes at Horseneck Beach, Mass., poem by Brenda Davis Harsham (BEACH AND POOL MEMORIES Poetry and Prose Series)

Check out a picture of my daughter and a summer poem on Silver Birch Press! Such fun to write and lovely to see it published.

Silver Birch Press

harshamTwenty Minutes at Horseneck Beach, Massachusetts
by Brenda Davis Harsham

My daughter chants
Beach, beach, beach!
in her wobbling soprano.
Bluebell skies,
wavy-air heat, a
parking lot half-eaten
by sand dunes.
Stiff winds smell
salty-clamy-fishy.
We add our coconut
sunscreen scent.
My husband and I unload
one picnic blanket,
two beach chairs,
three pails,
four shovels,
one cooler,
one giant towel tote,
two beach umbrellas,
one beach cart,
one song-girl
and two grumbling boys,
looking slightly green
from wrong turns and
illegal U-turns when our
GPS failed us.
We push, shove, pull and carry
our gear past cars
pumping Brazilian rhythms
and weaving a
welter of languages,
Spanish, Hindi, Portugese,
French, American English,
Australian English, German,
Korean and your-guess.
15 minutes of donkey labor
over feet-sinking soft sand,
we reach the solid threshold
of packed damp sand.
Waves tease and retreat.
My daughter sinks her shovel
and beams as if…

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In-Between Weekend

West Dennis Beach sunset

Salty breezes lift away cares.
Color spills across the water,
Too intense for the sky to contain.
Horseshoe crabs dance a blurry ballet,
Twisting and turning in the gentle waves.
Seabirds swim quietly, at peace.
Twilight wanes, in-between day and night.
Summer is ending; school is about to begin.
In-between holds powerful magic.
Tomorrow seems far away,
Yesterday, a pleasant, hazy memory.
The right-now is a time of beauty.
Fleeting, but all the more precious for it.

Copyright 2014 Brenda Davis Harsham

Note: Happy Labor Day Weekend! This sunset was photographed on the West Dennis Beach, Cape Cod, Massachusetts.

Silvery Sea Foam

Silver Sea Foam

Wet sand between my toes,
My feet sink lower with each wave.
Toes wiggling, soon I’m ankle deep,
Losing my balance and entranced by
Silvery sea foam, cresting the waves and
Soaking my rolled up jeans.
I laugh with each cold shock.

Copyright 2014 Brenda Davis Harsham

Seabird Sentinel

Seagull, beach, pacific ocean, muir beach

Seabirds dip and dive,
Catching crabs and fish.
A seagull watches children play,
From his lonely perch on the sand.
He lives always in between,
On the edge between sea and land,
Soaring far above them both,
Never joining in the games.
His hoarse caw echoes
Past the dry curls of seaweed,
Mingling with the salty air.
Sometimes, on the inside,
Each of us is like that seabird,
Watching others play,
Outside, on the edge of other things.
And yet, what would the sea be
Without the seabird, standing watch?
Each of us is needed, ever part and apart.

Note: I dedicate this post of all those affected by the two lost Malaysian airplanes, one found (MH17) and one not (MH 370). My heart goes out to the victims and their families. We are all needed, and their loss is our loss.

Stonehenge by the Sea

Stonehenge by sea

Rocks protrude, waves crash,
Mist embraces the shore.
What giant moved these rocks here,
To fight the tide and battle time?

This enchanted place calls to me,
Like Stonehenge by the Sea,
A crossroads between the past and future,
Nothing settled, always changing.

Even the sky changes in a heartbeat,
Water battling earth, air carrying their cries:
Elemental soundings, missing only fire.
Magic enfolds, perhaps the fire is in me.

Copyright 2014 Brenda Davis Harsham

Plum Island Haibun

Pavilion Beach, Ipswich, looking out at Plum Island

Seabirds scream overhead before diving into Pavilion Beach’s gentle waves. Tide pools reflect the sky. Surrounding sand is cold and muddy, squashing between my toes. A salty wind scrubs my skin raw.

The Ipswich beach is not crowded, but on one side, a sausage dog sniffs my feet and looks askance. On the other side, college students discuss over-drinking and under-studying, their laughter louder than the waves. Across the Sound, Plum Island’s sands gleam whiter than wishes. I daydream about solitude over there: just my family, the seabirds and the sunshine, sea winds blowing my cares away.

tide ripples and footsteps on the sand

I look down at the ripples left by the tides. Overlaid are footprints of people who arrived, gazed at the same sights as me, and then departed. They left these traces of life behind: bare feet, shod feet, children’s feet, bird feet. I add my footprints to the chaos left by other beach lovers. I am part of a greater whole, separate, yet no different.

white boat bobs
sails furled, engine quiet
bird feet leave no trace

Copyright 2014 Brenda Davis Harsham