On the fortressed cliff I watch the ocean waving at the terns, turning in the frothy drafts, and listen to the rolling sea lions’ chorus barking their concern about the rocks that slip green into grave depths. If the beating sea’s immortal, I see it’s everything, but at the aching heights the gray wind makes twisted haiku of the aged cypress. Being young, I see I’m free of nothing that I know, but it hurts— not to be like the foam-born clouds that rain blue upon the symmetrical shore that I embrace, but that I turn away from.

11 November 1973