Often enough we go to the seals
by the woodland path where tortoiseshell moths
willlessly travel from shadow to light,
always in twos,
then we follow the edge of the field,
and beetle down the cliff towards the strand
no access but the sea.
Below to the beach we gaze, distinguishing
rock from rock, till one rock moves, the next
ambles, slithers, stays; stretches out on a ledge.
there must be ten of them, available
In the silent, windless day
there comes a sound like the breaking of the world,
like the sky creaking, rending blue from blue,
a sound we disbelievingly receive as true,
that our ears are aching to hear again:
like the soul of rain,
the song of the seal.