When the tide has slipped
to the other side,
when the water’s succumbed
to songs of distant sand,
the semaphore crabs wave.
Tiny orange limbs
haphazardly salute—
messages bounce
from claw to claw.
Water like oil
vibrates in silver puddles,
islands of light
waiting, listening.
Soon, news from the other side
will arrive, caressing
black mud,
beckoning small messengers.
The ocean, breathy,
calls the shallows.
Small homes with walls of silt
and floors sunk deep
are sprinkled between
half buried tyres, twisted mangroves
and federations of oysters.
Each minute castle guarded,
by a chorus of limbs.
This transient world
of air and mud and messages
unveiled daily
by the pull of a moon.