In the morning on the shoreline 
Before the sun heats up the sand 
Come the shell collectors walking 
One by one or hand in hand.

Before the wee-bikinied bathers
Sprawl the beach and splash the shallows
Collectors wade the water edges
As wave and moon-drawn tide allow.

No less rolling, crashing surfside 
Was this ocean long ago, when 
No man, some say, was here to watch 
These slow waves lash the chattel sands.

Some say that men of sand-grain learning 
Bearing bones to prove their lore 
Speak true of times earth sheltered only 
The pterodactyl and the dinosaur.

In truth, though, man has always been here 
With all his hopes, his dreams, his pride. 
So say the Vedic men of learning 
Who stand above both wave and tide.

Not always oiled and wee-bikinied 
Not always prostrate to the sun 
But men on earth their dreams pursuing 
Dreams unrelenting, never done.

Not done unless through tideless blessings 
Of Guru-Krsna's mercy sweet 
They dreamed they were not lords but servants 
Sand grains at their creator's feet.

Those servant men raised loud their voices 
Sang Yahweh! Allah! Krsna! Lord! 
Took every creature as their brother 
Drank Guru's every priceless word.

They're walking now on deathless beaches 
In deathless lands of living beauty 
The eternal youthful Lord their comrade 
Serving Him their joyous duty.

And here along the morning shoreline 
Strolling in the wave-strewn foam 
The shell collectors stoop to gather 
A mollusk's shattered dreams of home.