Desert Row Ocean

Desert Row Ocean

He rowed a different ocean,
an ocean of sand
when he crossed the Sahara;
rowed in his mind
the upcoming competition
as he looked on dunes
mountaining against the rosy hued
sky, evenings.

Wind wrote the desert text.
as it does, often, the ocean’s,
a text he read with his oars,
like a blind man with his fingers;
waves of sand, waves of water,
his body a shell being propelled
through motion coming at him,
motion he met head-on.

Nearing the finish line, on race day,
the water he rowed had become
heavy as sand, ocean become desert,
but a desert he had already
crossed in his mind.

Philip Kuepper
(24 January 2014)

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