Two Poems By Terence Culleton

In That The Sea Embraces Everything

Here from where
the tide receded
hours ago,

the sand is bare
and coarsely kneaded
as cookie dough.

A kid treks by
with a fishing pole
and bucket, whaler’s hat

quaint—the sky
is nothing but charcoal,
it’s so cloudy that

though umbrellas shake
Gordian tassels
above, behind

a few last wave-raked
lumps of castles,
I’m resigned

to no sun today:
which isn’t half
bad upon a thought—

I’m not here to play,
God knows, nor for a laugh,
nor to get caught

up dreaming I’m free:
I’m here, really, to face
all that’s been lost on

me—alone—the sea
the only place
it could have gone.
Dream

My bleared and skeptic eyes
refuse to close—then do—
and now I realize
what can’t be true is true.

Eyes fuse to close, then do.
I see a green lagoon.
What can’t be true is true:
music under the moon.

A sea, a green lagoon.
I hear the pips and toots
of music under the moon:
pipes and penny flutes.

I hear the pips and toots
here where you cannot be:
pipes and penny flutes,
and you, you here with me,

here where you cannot be:
a ceaseless, windless lull,
and you, you here with me.—
The tide rides in at full,

the ceaseless, windless lull
is singing, and I realize
the tide rides in—at full—
my bleared and skeptic eyes.

Terence Culleton has published three collections of formally crafted narrative and lyric poems, A Communion of Saints (2011) and Eternal Life (2015), both with Anaphora Literary Press, and a collection of fifty-four English sonnets, A Tree and Gone, just out through Future Cycle Press. A Tree and Gone is available at https://amzn.to/3qDrRqN or through his website, terenceculletonpoetry.com, where you can also purchase his other books, read his blogs on poetry, and keep up with his breathlessly exciting life as a writer.

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