I carry sea shells three at a time
to safety across beach sprinkled
with fragments of their kind.
Some purple. A few pink.
Beyond reach, evening surf
swirls more than I can rescue
into a rainbow of shards, grinds
perfectly shaped scallops, whelks,
even hawk-wing conchs fine,
then tosses them ashore
to join sand lying white in death
beside yesterday’s salt.
You wade, oblivious. My footprints
pool in high tide.
I see wounds, not delight,
slicing red across the sky.