Old friend, if only you could walk with me,
climbing over the gate into Myakka Point.
The salt marsh spreads out into the mouth of the river
and ospreys circle overhead.
The oak hammock muffles,
silences the gaggle of afternoon traffic.
Hundreds of small crabs scramble from their burrows to taste
what tidbits and treats the falling tide left.
The cicadas whine,
but this breeze can speak in its native tongue.
Resetting Our Clocks
Memories should taste
like a fresh pitcher of sun tea
simmered slowly on the front porch
of our first house where I’m mowing
the lawn, an endless summer chore.
My wife is rearranging the bric-a-brac that
will become our lives. Sweet? Not today.
She leafs through her day book
and no longer sees decades piled up
ahead of us. Only a thin stack of years–
five or seven, maybe ten or twelve.
What will be, more our has beens.
Like our millennium New Year’s,
a night with a slight chill spent
together, alone on the bank
of the Homosassa River where the tide
pulled spring water into the Gulf.
We are no longer those people
and wait for our grandchildren’s visits.
I’m napping this afternoon away.
Our lawn lays fallow for another week.
Let’s boil up shrimp and pack
a cooler. We’ll head for Boca Grande
to applaud the sunset or watch
the thunderheads drag gray curtains
through the surf, onto the shore.
Stephen Reilly is presently working as a staff writer for the Englewood Sun, a daily Florida newspaper with circulation in south Sarasota County, Charlotte, and DeSoto counties. His poems have appeared in the Broad River Review, Poetry South, and other publications.