Another year is coming to an end
but my old t-shirts will not be back—
the pea-green one from Trinity College,
gunked with streaks of lawnmower grease,
the one with orange bat wings
from Diamond Cavern, Kentucky,
without a trace.
After a two-day storm I wander the beach
admiring the ocean’s lack of attachment.
I huddle beneath a seashell,
lonely as an exile.
My sadness is the sadness of water fountains.
My sadness is as ordinary as these gulls
importuning for Cheetos or scraps
of peanut butter sandwiches.
Feed them a single crust
and they will never leave you alone.
Copyright © 2016 by Campbell McGrath. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on September 28, 2016, by the Academy of American Poets.