Since last March, rangers have been guarding hollows of sand where Piping Plovers, close to extinction, laid their eggs. Now the survivors have hatched and left the beach. Already, autumn has made the water too cold to swim, so I walk the shoreline, looking for traces of hollows the birds have outgrown, but the life of the beach has covered them over. Up on the dunes, you stand quietly watching me, then wave. Last fall, last winter, you were so frail, and now you are sound. Suddenly, the soft gray color of your shirt looks more beautiful than the whole, wild, darkening sky.
Gail Golden SnowApple No.1 12/99
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