For Dave, My first-born son

A young girl again,
running to the beach,
watching sunrise-silhouetted
fishermen leap
from bloody waters,
pull ashore
fish-filled boats.

Next to jetties
they unloaded
piles of mackerels. Gills
stilled by useless air;
the dead fish
began to stink. Listen!
seagulls circling.

Salt-sweating, silvered
with slippings of these fish,
jeweled by sea water,
the silent fishermen
glistened in their work.

My water breaking,
I cry out, riding waves rising,
falling. With one last surge
I expel you
onto this shore.

You begin to pump your lungs,
breathe in this ocean of air.
I listen to your gull-like cry.
Silvered by sea water
you are alive,
and I am brilliant
in this work.

Published in Over a Threshold of Roots, Sandra Larson, Pudding House Chapbook Series, 2007