Here is a Richard Hugo poem about Alki Beach submitted by Kreg - a student librarian at the West Seattle Library. Thank you Kreg! More information about local writer, the late Richard Hugo, can be found by clicking on the Title Link above.
Alki Beach - by Richard Hugo
Clams and barnacles clatter
black and white in the first feet
of a new tide. By old piles
perch gleam, slide by flexing
men o’war. Bathers urge
the summer to their skins
and water climbs in air
to hurt their eyes. Gulls
echo in two-note screams to the south
of pioneering winds, the moment
a ferry spawns waste.
Where whites first landed
is forgotten. Spray,
abandoned, falls from the statue
by the marked-off, unused picnic grounds.
A love begins: a beer can, tossed,
stops rolling where waves
can barely reach. And a love is ended
or it never started: one man,
his coat too dark for the day,
where waves will never reach, remembers
what descended where the bubbles are.
from A Run of Jacks (1961)
Incidentally, the West Seattle Library will be hosting a conversation about Hugo’s work next Sunday (June 3) at 2pm. More info at:
Richard Hugo Library Talk