Skimming whale sanctuaries early on
The carpet unfolds from the horizon
In pulsing, crazy-quilting lines,
Brawny shoulders bearing brine.
A handful of water birds cry
Under a faultless, cloudless sky--
A ceiling of pale blue
Defining a washboard of darker hue.
The turquoise muscles writhe toward earth,
Dredging sand and smashing surf;
Tracking their relentless caper
By shaking out froth and vapor.
They stumble upon each other
With an all-embracing smother
To batter the Big Island's jagged chin
With a shuddering, shattering din.
Spent and quieted, they nudge lava faces
With sun-brightened snow-white traces
Holding sway an entire day,
Embracing the edges of an azure bay.