We drove to the coast
in my father’s ’51 GMC.
We hiked over furrows
to the shore.
We stepped in runnels.
My father knew the man
driving the tractor.

We got set up.
My father said number eights
with treble hooks would work best.
A pelican came in just behind a breaker,
laid his beak into it, skimmed
with the seine God had given him.
He was a beautiful gray bird.
Young, my father said.
“He’s a young bird,” is what my father said.

My father took off his boots and socks,
sat in the wet sand,
let the water find him.
He let the water come up on him.
The way the sea sounded right then,
It forced me to listen.

:: Marc Petersen, This Is My Brother Talking (1998)

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