Stone Comfort

The stone is all - we must 
buffet the wind and 
fill the crevices, place 
our backs to the sea - see

there is the white sail scarfing 
and bobbing over the sound 
and here I strike a fire, 
put my pot in the doucat

and idly stir the fish 
in the tank, fingers shivering 
with cold salt, the crackle 
and smoke fill our lung-

space, the rustle of bracken 
as he turns, the sweet 
smell of summer in 
the dried grasses, white daisies -

	thick skin, warm hair, voices

hit the stone in the passage 
the scraping of shoulders on 
stone, the bend before 
the lintel, turn the wooden

gate, and hold.   Outside 
the sun is glinting clear 
and sharp, the sea stirred 
white and running - out

across the water the slanting 
smoke of fires: kin, friends. 
And tomorrow the tryst, fires 
and singing, laughter.

The day after we meet, plan 
for winter, arrange.   But 
for now I stir the fire and 
stir the water, hear

	the hard breath of autumn

hit the outer wall like 
threat and warning.   People 
laugh and pass by my door. 
I am comforted.
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