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The Castaway by TL McKelvey

The Castaway by TL McKelvey

The Castaway


You hold me loosely in the palm of your hand,

Like a skipping stone worn smooth.

Scanning the horizon, lost in thoughts you will not share,

You cast me out into the water and walk away,

Leaving me to sink to depths unknown.


You are not the first to cast me aside;

Perhaps the last, but hardly the first.

I have spent due time among the sandy bottom,

Refined by grit and water, my rough edges

Sanded down and polished like marble.


The waves of life bring me back to shore,

As the next beachcomber strolls past,

So taken with the treasure they place in their pocket,

Vowing to hold onto this pearl of great price.

“So lovely,” they murmur, stroking the softness

Of my hard exterior, while I wait, bracing myself

For the moment when they begin to see me as only a stone.


Held loosely, in the palm of another hand,

I ready myself for the moment when I am cast out,

Marveling at the idea that even stones can fly,

And I settle, slowly, slowly, back into the depths

That welcome me with open arms and conceal me

In solitude, familiar and grounding.


I am ready to no longer wash upon the shore,

To luxuriate in the traces of light that filter down

Through waves and depth,

Warming me in comfortable isolation.

I am a stone, polished by sand and sea.

Finally realizing that the hand that tossed me away,

Inevitably set me free.


~ TL McKelvey 2017