The horizon slopes
to the right
and the sky is palette-knife smooth
until the cumulous ripple-curls
to match the surf spume at their feet.
Five of them, their backs to the camera
on the glossy rock
where the sea has washed and washed
with all its tides
the black basalt
and comes back at night
to inspect with waving fingers
the day’s effects.
They are looking down
except for the smallest;
he has his mother’s hand
and shyly lifts his eyes
to the nearest wave
with all the little waves on its surface
and the spin and drift of sea.
The rocks slope to the left,
deep shadows in their fault lines
that black out day.
The figures will take another step in a moment
careful of bare feet on whelks
or the slip of that fine-haired sea weed
or the next resound of surf break.