Howard Wright

Snorting, snuffling the dunes; half-trotting, then cantering,
on the trail of things to do, was this dog high-tailing us
through the prongs of fierce grass to the tide's folded hem.
To me, it was badness that came between us, a lost soul

too curious for its own good, but there was something
to be said for its determination to follow our lead, to hang on
to our heels in its urgent, head-down, unshakable fashion.
Then again, more than likely it was the same for all couples

who don't walk as close as they should, say enough
once silence had surprised them, or take pleasure
in such a total day curving out, past shipwreck or martello,
to the intricate stitching of the sea… I laughed it off,

saying, (while seriously believing) every beach, everywhere,
has one such dog, the same every time, never at home,
heartbreakingly sociable, waiting to be recognised
for what it is, then called, accepted and left alone.

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