Paul Blackburn






Long ago and far away

                        and the swimmer
           heading out into the bay
           arm lift, plunge down, the head turning;
           my heart you may swim forever
                                                                    out. Look,

there is the horizon
Sea and sky meet, change; why
are we not this real intensity forever?
     surrounded and known.
The world else is brown and calculated.

There on the beach, the
      woman watches.
Between her legs the dog sits,
wiggling, wanting to go
too. It is a kind of death watching him swim out,
away from her, his head getting smaller and smaller, flash
     of arm in sun, down,
distant churn of water between the small waves. She
holds the dog's two haunches in her hands.

           He is hardly to be restrained, and love
           is manifest, is felt from the two of them

           The swimmer is himself.