Back today to posting poems I haven’t posted before – so getting gradually nearer the present day. The first two lines of this one came to me as I was driving from Maldon to Colchester by a B road and I fashioned the rest of it while driving, with much mental repetition to try to make sure I didn’t forget it before I could write it down.
The beast in the mud has gone to sleep
It hasn’t moved for three years now
Only the wind makes shallow waves
Only the workmen shake the ground
I don’t think that the beast is dead
It’s slept for several years sometimes
But studies of the warning signs
Have not much helped predict the next
The sudden knowledge “this is it”
The change of shape, the sudden crack
The haunting song, the sense of loss
The settling fragments of the map.