This poem is from the brand-new seaside-themed collection written by me and Eve Nortley, "Driftwords".
The heat out here is palpable,
A presence that can curse or caress,
Its touch is physical.
By afternoon I await the dark,
Distant but it will still come.
The sky turns hazy,
"Forest fires" say locals.
Algarve ash falls like dark snow and sorrow
On the beach.
Something is changing,
There is finality in this fiesta.
Text and technology falter and fail.
I find myself seeking smoke signals,
Tide tables, sailors' forecasts,
Star signs from above.
I repeat old words said to me
Like sacred mantras, ancient creeds,
Prayers to fill the vacuum
Of my need.
A line is being gouged in the sand
And the world will change
For me, for them, for her, for you,
All slipping through my trembling hands.
I'm waiting for your signal
To rise above the deep, dark blue.