Crab

A crab washed to shore on Long Beach, WA

Crab

Shannon Laws

A foam washed wreckage to shore
breath-bubbles pop in the thin light

Early beachcomber fights the gulls
for a freshly delivered treasure

The minute before dawn you grab it’s back
Carry it to your kitchen for a slow boil

With a crack, a glut of juices spill out
Lips suck at the muscle and warm butter

An ear to the empty skin echoes the sea

 

What inspired you to write this?
a friend at my monthly poetry discussion groups asked

Well, I heard a line from some poem at an open mic.  It went something like, he sucks the juices from your claws, eats the muscles from her claws
I started to think about how the line could be used in a domestic violence poem about allowing another person to take your strongest parts, your claws, and devour them, you know, boil them for dinner

That sounds like a great poem!

Ya.  It could have been, but I couldn’t get it to work.
The right words didn’t come

So, WHY is the sea in the empty skin and whose skin is it?

The sound of the sea is in all things born in the sea.
In this story, it is a song that sings the memory of the crab

I don’t get it.

ya, the words didn’t come.
It needs new words