Ed Roberson

VI. Cape Journal: At Sand Pile





      it matters less

than as long as

      their shapes last


      that you call this

a cloud   that a whitecap;

      and less


      than either, this

answering   a name

      yours  mine or


      the how many names

of snow: flat, shifty, six-faced


                                 families  of New Jersey






I felt,

      for less than a wave

         washing over, why

the hermit life heals,

       talking together

             after so many years.


This morning, walking alone,

       fortunate guest walking

              the blank beach,

I remembered

—because I had listened  to both of us—

I'd had nothing to tell.


And that  is to say, thankfully,

Paul, I also have no memory of Rutgers.





the wind erasures

on the dunes,

polished unlike our

confused images


these removals are the composition


the principle of composition


the sand clearing the water by the end

      of the wave

the caps clearing the horizontal

      water into the air  a moment


and contained as in the glass ball of that moment  the coast

and its raining afternoon

and the waves in a fog of dune grass here





      No one had yet left any steps

in the sand, no old suggestion

      of limit as


      to my own locomotion.

I could be flying.

      —though only in this direction.


The return would make this clearer,

      put it on the ground,

      put it to measure, a step


like music This should explain

      a feeling of being fortunate  more

than just the beating out the distance one


in front of the other.





simply because we have forward

facing us

in which we see these things





the beach grain

by grain moving   the length,

walking the length of itself





Robison Robinson

Roberson Robertson

Robeson what does it matter?


none of the crackers

keeping records

on us could spell, either.


I am clear.

the length of myself I have moved

the melanin color to color





so when daddy decided

to open his business by filing according

to white people's spelling


none of his brothers had any

of the same


stupid crackers


everyone remembered them

telling you shut up

you couldn't spell

hell with it then


look in my goddamn face

and see

my damn name





from —Voices Cast Out to Talk Us In