blessing the boats

By Lucille Clifton

                                            (at St. Mary's)

may the tide
that is entering even now
the lip of our understanding
carry you out
beyond the face of fear
may you kiss
the wind then turn from it
certain that it will
love your back may you
open your eyes to water
water waving forever
and may you in your innocence
sail through this to that


Lucille Clifton, "blessing the boats" from How to Carry Water: Selected Poems. Copyright © 2020 by The Estate of Lucille T. Clifton. Used with the permission of The Permissions Company, LLC on behalf of BOA Editions, Ltd., All rights reserved.