A Walk around the Sea



Tide seeps away, slips in

An old man walks a white dog

Past a propeller of a fallen aircraft

Shell into curio, curio into sand

Sand into shoe

Shoe shaken

Barrels, bottles, shells, a log

All we make by seed or batch

Settle like a sleeper’s thought


Detached house in the suburbs

In the garage a four-wheel-drive

Stripey shirt on his shoulders

Yet he’s still alive

Shouting at a computer

Flying to cut a deal

What’s the sea to him, he says

Yet to him it’s real

In his dreams he’s lying

Wet on a drying beach

Weighted down and choking

The world is out of reach

Yet he is surviving

Growing lungs and feet

Swinging from the treetops

Drumming to a beat

That recalls the wave-rasp

On the untrod shore

Yet he’ll lock it out, left

Drumming on the door


Beginner of life

Ender of lives

Blood that links the throbbing ports

Coverer of walls and wrecks

These living things

Thread into you:

Nile, Rhine, Mississippi, Niger

Amazon, Yangtse, Irrawaddy, Volga

Ganges, snow melting at your touch, rough rain

Merging their shifting memories in your depths

Yet feeling fingers into inlet and sluice

Casting up driftwood and messages, beaching jellyfish

Luring out fishermen, giving them their catch

Taking the messages, bodies, driftwood back.

Leave a comment


  1. I liked that….

    All of us drifters
    The sea in us
    The continuous element
    That binds……

    • You’ve hit it right on the nail, Neel. The sea is a constant subject in my poems. At present I’m posting bit by bit stuff I wrote some time ago and this was the earliest sea poem I wanted to post. Look out for one called “Underwater”.


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