Skip to main content Skip to secondary navigation
Journal Article

Red Tide (Valparaiso Poetry Review; Fall/Winter 2019-2020)

Authors: Rob Jackson



The sea gasps

as crabs litter white Sanibel sands,

claws outstretched and flexing.

The pocked hand

of a starfish

clenches slowly skyward.

Soles plate the beach,

eyes dark and lusterless,

gulls gorging jelly.


A manatee bloats near high tide

as blow flies swarm

to pierce its skin.

Onshore winds whip

panicgrass over beach dunes,

raw in their exposure,

and a child bears water's malice,

a rash from swimming,

the scratch of asthma's rise.

Journal Name
Valparaiso Poetry Review
Publication Date
Red Tide