Listening to Seashells

By Sarah Leavesley

kelp on the beach

I invited you home though I’d nowhere nice
to take you. We spoke of broken hearts,
whispered promises into pearled shells
glistening with hope and far horizons.

Oceans of words flowed between us.

We built a boat from these dreams, sailing
through sunlit days until we reached the right shore,
and made a home from shipwrecked timber
and the lullaby of gentle waves.

When time’s tides tugged you back, I couldn’t calm

their currents crashing hard against the rocks
Alone, I return to our secret place. On still nights,
when bubbles jewel the moonlit surface
and the dawn washes in new shells,

I pick them up and listen to your whispers

of sun, silk and salty glisten. I feel again
our years of floating free together.

Photo by Sarah Leavesley

This article appeared in the Beachcombing Magazine January/February 2023 issue.

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