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  You could have a big dipper   

A1A by Lucas Peel

not every vast expanse can be called an ocean, you say, licking salt from your cheeks. each year,

the city spends a million bucks to replenish the dying beach. diesel trucks parade along spanish river, dump in a small cove cut from the tangle of sea grapes. renourishment, a man says from behind the glass podium. we sit in an old station wagon at the dune’s edge, polish off a six pack, read the masterplan for another beachfront condominium. returning from a semester away, we pretend the only thing that has changed is distance. silence stuck in the thick air like salt. you show me ripe skin, puffy and peeling, an orchard in the winered afternoon. i say i guess we’ve all done something worthy of a knife’s meander, meaning more to say something at all. you scoop a broken conch from underfoot, hold the empty to your ear. and how often must we pick up the pieces to learn that sound is nothing more than our own echoing madness, a crest and fall, rushing to dampen the space with debris. we search for tiny treasures but instead find the crude bits of plastic emerging from the belly of creature too lovedrunk to keep them for itself. how gracious, i think, that we spill so as to not mistake the ground for our lonely. we pour out the foamy remains of our beer, dig our toes into wet sand. somewhere, the world is ending and here a young night reaches out and finds its hand in mine. in the distance, a clump of space dust jettisons the horizon, some forgotten star or satellite, insignificant in the city’s filthy glow. see, you say, this was made for us. and maybe that means more than we think. or more than it should.


Lucas Peel is a negligent plant father, scoliosistic long bean, and food-motivated nocturne. You can find his work on a handful of shelves on his mother's dresser and also forthcoming in the iPhone 7 Notes app. We do not know what he's yelling about.

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