Playa Honda, Lanzarote
Farther out there may be a beach but here
there is a lava scramble still shiny and,
from time to time, still washed by sparse waves
that hardly break. Further on as we walk
small white breakers float softly to the shoreline,
skip up the rocks and vanish in the dusk.
I can’t think what to say that would not spoil
in the air so I am, dumb man that I am,
simply an arm to hold, a profiled face
to walk beside, a shirt you may yet admire.
The boats are resting in the shallow bay
not far ahead but I know what they want:
they have set themselves to captivate you
on the restaurant veranda; to beg
of me some kind of immortality
as the warm night closes in on our table.
It is a picturesque scene, we agree –
and we have to talk of something, don’t we?
But they, meanwhile, sit silent and at ease,
winking on the blackened tide; lit softly
by the restaurant lights. Matt red, white, blue and black,
they’ve wilted into looser shapes now the sun,
somewhere over the island, sets in a blaze
we don’t see, remote, splendid and unashamed.
© John Stuart