Animal

Wakened, weakened
mobile bag of guts, precarious
as tiny porcelain christ on the
hood ornament, made
a way, more fish than
baby, water than
body, broken bit of
squiggling jelly over
taken by its shadow.

Closed eyes could be any
where the sand is
warm, heavy
sigh.
The empty spot
when pressed, gasped, half
grasped, a lullaby, one
low note stretched
tentlike over ten
nonsensical words.

Its venture measured
in inches, calligraphic
contours, a series of
creaks and seizures, seized
and carried by the tide to
where children lie on
stomachs reading hieroglyphics.

At first touch terrifying:
petrified, fleshlike, some
thing monstrous you
could become, given time,
given death: alien.