Versions 2 & 3 addressed a seersucker suit. Version 4 addresses the cliff. As with version 3 I built the poem from a hunk of research. Most of it is from Terry Wright’s geologic tour of Shell Beach, a beach on the Sonoma Coast. I grew up in Sonoma County. Shell Beach was not one where I’d spent much time – mostly we drove out to Salmon Creek Beach which has a lot of soft sand. When I took a geology class at junior college our instructor told us Shell Beach is world famous for its melange, a mix of rocks transformed by the pressure of subduction, the Pacific plate grinding under the Continental Plate in a series of fault zones. The metamorphized rocks pop up at Shell Beach. It was fun stirring in words like chert, eclogite, radiolarian, and slickenside. I’m still hoping to find room for nappe and amphibolite.
I’ve long wanted to incorporate research into a poem and internet research is proving remarkably congenial to the effort. It’s sure nice being able to highlight and copy to a file all the interesting bits; once grabbed they are easy to manipulate. I suppose one ought to be cautious about plagiarism here, the accidental (?) reuse of the original’s phrasing. I want to retain some of the flavor of the original as that material is a good deal different from what I do and holding onto some of that difference seems like a good thing.