So what if the minestrone soup

was too salty, the meat chunks

stringy, this was before dental floss

and beyond caring if small brown bits

lodged between our teeth would be

visible when we laughed out loud.

And if the air smelled of rain that day,

the sand was diamond studded,

cool under a low canopy of clouds,

along a sea the exact green shade of our

favorite modeling clay, gray-green

of the frenzied dolphin pride we watched,

and we alone on that beach caught sand crabs,

scooped dozens into faded red buckets,

welcomed sea stars, hundreds upon hundreds

washed ashore by an impending Nor’easter

before the storm. The sand crabs scurried on our

wet palms, traced our life lines without

prediction, performed tricks in sand crab

circuses we made in the metal pie plates

we’d lifted from Mother’s meticulous kitchen

When we ran our fingers over their pebbled legs,

the sea stars suckled our arms

and raised fine hairs on the backs

of our tanned necks. This was

long before we came to covet their ability to renew themselves,

long before I saw them as metaphor.

This was one day of sandblasted laughter.

They simply tickled and we were there.

Abrams-Morley grew up in the heart of Princeton. Co-founder/director of Around the Block Writers’ Collaborative Liz is a professor in the MFA in Writing Program at Rosemont College. She and her husband currently live in Philadelphia.

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