Travelers Welcome

Travelers Welcome

Sunday, December 15, 2013


by Stephen Barry

At low tide
when the mud flats are exposed
when the pilings stand naked to the sun
when seaweed lays in lifeless clumps
when the sea birds feast on stranded shell fish
a stench arises

a stench of decay
a stench of despair
a stench of death

That same stench arises
during the low tide of the soul
when love is lost
when hope is lost
when dreams are lost
when lives are lost.

At low tide the lonely walk
leaving deep distinct footprints
sinking ever deeper into the muck
with each step they take,
as if being pulled tighter
to the loving bosom
of mother earth.
Until at last they are fully embraced
in the seductive  mire
until at last washed clean
by the incoming forgiving waves.

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