I used to imagine men like my father

shouldering these blocky boulders

creating the rutty wet pathway into the surf,

their foreman following some complicated

blueprint of size and shape and placement,

of exact layered black and grey greatness

piled in misaligned perfection,

leaving small pockets of murky space

where the ocean waves could shift and hide;

and holding my father’s hand, I’d step almost

where he did, across the moss covered

patches where the surf would break in to

the wind heaving its stench of decaying

fish and salt water—to the very end

to where, if we didn’t look back, ocean

was all we could see; the deacon’s

arm extending the communion plate.

2010 Bucks County Poet Laureate and recipient of the Penland Prize for Poetry, Lins’ has had work printed in numerous publications, among them the Bucks County Writer, the Schuylkill Valley Journal, Mudfish 16, Transcendent Visions and Eating Her Wedding Dress. Her chapbook, “I Called It Swimming” was published in 2011. Born and raised in central New Jersey, Lins now resides in Bucks County with her family and adopted Golden Retriever.

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