Strollers pad over the sand with pails and shovels.
Bottle-cap doubloons and artifacts of driftwood gold await,
with jewel fragments of ship's crockery.
Dune grass and chips of mussel shell have no tongues,
no memories to tell of what happened here.
The paddle wheel steamer
that burned and sank off this point
has given up her ghosts.
Drowned, burnt or frozen,
their whispered curses and shrieked prayers
are crushed in the breakers.
Fifty-two feet down,
her iron boiler lies crusted with with shells.
She sleeps in a blanket of cold green weed.
No working boat or pleasure craft
plies the waves today, too rough, too rough,
but not too rough for gulls and ducks.