Laguna Beach
by Gail Entrekin

Just into our second Margarita we begin
our annual State of the Marriage exploration.
We have come here for this,
where the surf crashes around our bed upstairs
and down here in the restaurant, surrounded by strangers,
we are finally alone.

So little has changed since our last review,
we fumble in the dark for the invisible corners of words…
reaching back into the closet of recent memory
trying to discover that once most obvious of information:
how we feel.

Look, we say. These mismatched socks, that outgrown jersey,
some snapshots, cracked and bent but still recognizable.

Shall we pitch them overboard? We look them over,
exchange memories, come to find them dear.
We put them back. Nothing tells us anything we haven't learned
in five thousand days in a small boat.

The truth is, this boat is seamless and steady as she goes.
It takes on very little water, though we love this annual bailing.
And mainly we remember
that what sometimes seems so unwieldy,
so slow and awkward to maneuver,
an ocean liner under full power,
is still this small craft, and both of us rowing.


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