A predawn runner turns his head
when my studio light comes on,
but is a half block gone
when the first keyboard-clicks
form words upon the screen.

His red windbreaker
enters the poem
as a brush stroke by Turner
down the shoreline
along the sea wall.

What I take as the world turning
is the runner’s feet powering rotation.

When he stops for the traffic light,
dawn is seven seconds delayed.

If his ankles sprout wings
does this display an ancient divinity
or a marketing strategy
by some global shoe company?

He reaches the end of the seawall.
Caught in the sun’s first gleam
the breakers splash white and gold
on the harbor, the docks, the channel lights,
the gentle sway of sleeping boats.

copyright © 2019 Kenneth P. Gurney


When I first moved to Port Angeles, WA in 2001, I lived for 6 weeks in an apartment 3 blocks from the harbor, while waiting for the previous owner to vacate my new house outside of town. Occasionally time seems non-linear, because I had a visceral moment back in that apartment overlooking the harbor the morning I wrote this poem.

One thought on “Adrift

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