The morning bicyclers were not out yet
and dunes hid me, hungover, half asleep.
I knew she could not see me watching them
as they came to the boardwalk hand in hand,
a grandmother with a child about four.
Her gray hair blended with the gray of dawn
and took a hot rose frost from the red tinge
of first light bouncing off the purple clouds.
She sat the child formally on the bench
as though ushered into a theatre,
folding her hands in delicate white gloves,
her pocketbook carefully in her lap.
The new sun free above the horizon,
the bench now small against the grandeur of
a bonfire sky on molten metal waves --
a tear reflects like mirror on her cheek,
"I made the trip so you wouldn't miss this",
the girl yawns early blue eyes at our show.
I warm to an all-encompassing gold
and the maternal heat of a new day.
She was frivolous,
thin and tan.
I was forty and
sick of my job.
She was talkative,
naked except for my shirt.
She told me she was chilled,
I covered her,
caressed her thigh.
She said she was bored,
I read her poems about us
written long ago.
she rolled her blue bloods
and wondered at my method,
I realized the cold,
stared at the sand
rushing most assuredly back
to the undertow.