Chased by a rush of water up the side
Of the shale at the fi rst point, I slog from there
To the furthest -- and the heron I know by day
Is a slab of the dark rock, breaking away
To pass me in the dusk. Down beach again
I spot his still shape -- leaf with a long stem.
When I come near he fl aps unhurriedly,
Belongingly, into the icy spray,
From me, this time to stay
Of the moon on the sleek wet sand (whereas in the sky
It's holding motionless, hatchet-sharp) and have an eye
On the just-after-sundown ocean's crinkling stir
In the beautiful steel-blue light that suddenly appears,
And fi nd myself thinking again about the way
Certain poets are always putting on a display
Of honesty -- they bring up yours, and of course theirs,
To your face; sometimes slyly, showing how others are
Dishonest -- as one of them just lately tried to tell
All of us Hardy was. That didn't turn out well.
However, credit for trying.... On with the essay-war
With each name mentioned being a piece of disputed terrain,
Or outpost in the latest honesty campaign.