Roberta Feins


Dry Lightning

Bear Island, North Carolina

This small sand hill, clenched
against a resentful shore, once belonged
to the Negro Teachers’ Association.
No cars, or buildings. We carry

our gear up over the dune,
then argue over where to pitch tent,
whether to waste driftwood for bonfire,
how mosquitoes survived before

there were people, who gets to come,
who first. Sex in sand, in broken
waves is not romantic after all.
Heat lightning flickers

the dark uneven edge of sky
Thousands of grooved tracks litter
the morning beach where Lettered Olives
crawl, laying eggs. More

scribbled shells than two of us can carry.
We ride the flat-bottom ferry back
up the Intercoastal Waterway past banks
of dredge spoil where Great Blue Herons nest.





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