When after months in seclusion

the sun triumphed over the bougainvillea

and spider mums opened along the path

twining into a grove of island trees

where she would read in the breezy afternoons;


when he could revel again at the ocean’s splashing

and brood over sand smoothing to the steps of the villa;

when he stood again on his balcony

to stare for hours at the sea sliding to shore

and the pelicans skimming the bay,


he poured coffee and memory in the new morning,

knowing she was swimming, waving,

somewhere out there in his thoughts,

coming back to him into the scent

of the flowers they planted year to year,


coming back to him wrapped only in a towel,

laughing and radiant with sin,

seaweed scattered on her shell smooth shoulders,

laughing at her silly little man

whose eager love had never dreamed her gone