Tuesday Poem: ‘The Smell of the Sea’ by Lola Elvy


These are the small things in life, you say, the wind, the rain, and everything in between. You make me feel small. The stairs are steep here, and I always trip, but that’s alright, I don’t mind. I have always wondered how the sea can smell, but I realize, it’s not the smell of the sea that people write about, but everything else, the feel, the touch, the sound, the very presence, and the weight of the sky is more than only legend, it is real, real and here, now, pressing down on us, making us hold our breath, not in cruelty, but in effort to make us inhale, taking with our earthly air the ice encasing the stars and the smoke risen from the ashes at our feet. The small things are what matter, you say.

copyright Lola Elvy. Posted with permission from the poet.


Momo20150823 (4) (800x531)I’ve been away from Tuesday Poem for some weeks. We spent the last half of July sailing from Malaysia to W. Sumatra and then, on August 1, departed Sumatra to cross the Indian Ocean. We arrived in Madagascar on August 25. Our world was a variation on blue for 3+ weeks.

My daughter Lola wrote poetry all the way across the Indian Ocean. This one was written the day after we arrived in Madagascar.

Thank you, Lola, for sharing!

For more about our passage and our sailing — for more photos of the watery world of blue — please go to our sailing site. We’ve just added some photos from our Indian Ocean crossing.


Tuesday Poem is a collective of poets who share poetry on a weekly basis across borders and time zones. Please check out the other poets and the main poem at the TP hub this week — The Topography of Wellington by Jennifer Compton, brought to us by Hub Editor Helen Lowe.

Tuesday Poem For more Tuesday Poems, go here.


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