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Down Here After Being Kept Away
Three Weeks by Sickness
How much I missed this place. While I've been gone
The season has turned, the winter birds are here,
The sand is fi rm, clean, smooth, and the air clear
With a wave fl ashing cold in the low sun
Under the slow wingbeats of a pelican
That three pilfering gulls keep swinging near,
Whimbrels and godwits and plovers and killdeer
Work the sleek shallows, I begin to run:
Easy, now. But I swear the beach gives back
My footthuds like the tightly stretched buckskin
It looks like here, the blazing water track
Of the sun's running beside me -- coming in
The old ocean commotion and the dark mass
Of a jogging girl's hair jouncing as we pass.