RETURNING TO A CERTAIN STRETCH OF BEACH
The years collapse to the fifties,
extended Slinky links springing back.
My mother’s brought a container of watermelon
with black seeds, a thermos of cold water.
She’s sunbathing near the red and white striped
umbrella that marks my return like a buoy.
Decades from today, I’ll take her to a doctor
for skin cancer removal, help her undress.
I’m doing headstands in the ocean,
my feet kicking skywards,
my mouth clenched against the salt.
I master the move, come up
sputtering. Soon I’ll wash
my mouth with fresh water,
enjoy that sweet melon,
packed by her young hands.
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