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The herring had just run down the coast.
Their pearled roe clung to every nook and weed.
A frenzy of birds descended in their wake.
And following the birds, sea lions in heat, their song
across the water like a string bowed to tearing.
We too were drawn to the water’s edge,
where the sea grew into all the rocks’ depressions.
You peered into tide pools. I stumbled with my camera,
deciding how much to let in. Keep the shade that let
me see, one tiny pinhole against all this light, remain
unmoved? Or dial the aperture wide, and risk
the picture: join the mingling we were meant for.
In love, turn permeable, like the clouds in the southward sky
streaking up and up like the handwriting of an ecstatic.

This poem originally ran in the October 30, 2006 issue of the magazine.