To Lucy

To Lucy
On the occasion of our 30th wedding anniversary

No grit sits within our shell.
Even if what the oyster grows
Glows with lustrous iridescence,
The alien kernel lurks there still.
So, take instead another metaphor:
The fluid concentration
Which bonds elements
Into the crystal’s solid geometry.
Ours to coalesce not in a mollusc’s case
But the haven of a home, close-formed,
With sons to prove our union;
Toil at times, of course,
But labour carves what’s worthy
Leaving, in its wake, the rest to share.
If there be any irritant,
It is, at worst, a gentle chafing,
Better smoothed with a caress
Than kept and coated with secreting.
Though it would be churlish,
After thirty years,
To abrogate the pearl completely
(When all is said,
It serves a lovely purpose)
Even so,
Do not heed the pearls
In my gift to you today.
Rather, see the clasp. D.N.M.