Hm. Nes

(April 11,1960 / Plainview, Texas)

Twenty-nine Thousand Four Hundred Seven Sunsets


Twenty-nine thousand four hundred seven sunsets
With one same sun on the one same sea.

In the early days by my mother’s side,
Though she’d often tell me of the sun and of the sea,
I seldom watched, and never for long,
The slow dissolve,
The melt and plunge,
Now you see it, now you don’t-
So many sunsets lost.

Twenty-nine thousand four hundred seven sunsets
With one same sun on the one same sea.

The years of my youth were marked by friends and sport,
Often whole days on the beach-
Raging winds and mammoth waves
Or a still, glass sea, not a cloud in the sky,
And every shade in between.
I rarely fathomed the myriad shapes and colors,
An ever-changing landscape-
So very many sunsets lost.

Twenty-nine thousand four hundred seven sunsets
With one same sun on the one same sea.

The middle-aged years pinned me to my work;
Yet through a window from time to time,
Or on holiday, if I risked the break,
I’d notice how lovely a sunset could be-
So very many sunsets lost forever.

Twenty-nine thousand four hundred seven sunsets
With one same sun on the one same sea.

At last, in these final days, each sunset is anticipated, craved.
Regardless the mood of the sea, it will receive the sun.
No matter the face of the sky, it will let go the same.
The sun itself, always churning, always burning,
Swells with new brilliance, new radiance and splendor
Each time it approaches the sea,
Then morphs into a molten pool on the sea’s surface
Before plunging from view-
Never more a sunset lost.

Twenty-nine thousand four hundred seven sunsets
With one same sun on the one same sea.

Then one glorious day,
The day of my twenty-nine thousand four hundred and sixth sunset,
And I at my usual place along the shore,
Saw the sun rise out of the sea from where it had just set!
The sun rose back up into the sky, and
In the very next moment on the very same day, it set again.
I experienced my twenty-nine thousand four hundred and seventh sunset,
The second in one day!
Oh glorious day!
A sunset gained.

Twenty-nine thousand four hundred seven sunsets
With one same sun on the one same sea.


(In 2 Kings 20: 9-11 the Lord made the shadow go back 10 steps. Certainly, at that exact moment, somewhere in the world, someone saw the sun dissolve on the horizon and then rise again.)

Submitted: Sunday, November 29, 2009
Edited: Sunday, November 29, 2009

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