Soft-gray clouds lessening over hard-gray sea,
Partly pulled apart into pink and orange,
Slowly separating into peach and gold,
Lovelier than a May dawn’s heart can be,
Above, and on the sea. Oh,
And the swell of the sea,
And the free-way-sailing open cries
Of the white-winged hailers of the waking skies,
Soaring around in felt-tipped height,
Around, dip, around, up, and far out wide around,
Till over the downs and down to the beach.
Not there, but here, is the feast I reach,
Back from the shore, through the grass and the flowers,
On a white table on a white-railed porch—-
The shell that you found this last half hour,
Raised, smelled, looked at so curiously,
As if Pure Secret were therein bound.
And no, you did not listen, as others do,
But stood just still, a real picture of pausing sound.
Then smiling, you walked proudly away with your own thought.
I ask it not, only look at the shell
And smile, glad that it lay so well.