limn

Harbour yellow

For Toni Morrison – who used the word well.

The sun crests the pines dark in silhouette – and limns the rocks under the clear water of the bay.

Full face mask affords a vertiginous panorama of fish shoals feeding on weed, surfing the undertow – busy in unselfconscious certainty in the flickering light.

Floating supine above, the woman revels in the silent coolness of the other world.

Grateful.

Content.

A sudden downward rush of thrusting water and energy to her left panics a thrashing scramble for the shore – from where, aeons later, feet on solid rock – she looks back.

It is a cormorant. Diving and bobbing up with full beak in a patch of silver, illuminated.

The sun strengthens.

She is no longer welcome here.