By William Stafford.
From high tide in the night a dead
sea lion explains itself on the wide beach –
folded back arms, drooping petals of feet,
one loud little rifle hole back of the mild
sleeping head. The world tilts back;
the sea returns. When stars pull their wires
tonight those dead eyes will move, and waves
make the deep song. Dunes will come
whispering back. Feathery grass will try
its long dim roots, a new version.