Tide and Ashes
by Clarence Wolfshohl

Gulf Coast of Florida

The tide creeps toward your castle,
the sandcastle I’ve sculpted for you
with crenellated tower. I’ve heaped

a handful of your ashes on the turret
and imagine you looking out
to the Gulf, at first searching

the horizon for mast or smoke,
then noticing the encroach of waves
along the ivory beach. I know

you won’t panic, as calm and strong
as always. And you are already
melding into the sand’s fabric,

its dampness absorbing ashes.
But enough stays dry and glistens
in the morning light to take the water

of the first wave that breaches
castle walls. You dive under
and sing with the surf again.

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