The strand

There could never have been a young stag
this far into the exposed and open air
not even a startled stray would cross the broad shingle spit
to graze on campion, poppy, false oat grass
and wonder at the lapping sea
no dainty, cloven hooves came this way
tentative – striking flint stones

the stranded antler was seaborne
stripped of its tell-tale bark
just a forked and bleached branchlet
I imagine it felled by October winds
dropped in an inlet, taken by storm
laid by the Spring tides on a pebble-dash bed
and in this oven of a high summer noon, the driftwood bakes
beneath its length, an outlined contour of cobalt
where the yellow waves cannot reach
and the speckled flint and chert
their sea sprayed sandy hues and livid blues
beached to infinity

A piece of driftwood drew my attention not least for its shape and blue shade outline and so it becomes an ekphrastic poem for my memory and as link up with the Tuesday Platform

23 Comments on “The strand

  1. Oh this is so good, Laura. More than a touch shamanic, but that last line ‘beached to infinity’ – a phrase with mind-altering substance!

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  2. Such a lovely ekphrastic poem, Laura! ❤ I can picture the ‘bleached branchlet’ and feel those ‘October winds’… sigh .. You are a true Poet in every sense of the word. 😊

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  3. taken by storm
    laid by the Spring tides on a pebble-dash bed
    and in this oven of a high summer noon, the driftwood bakes
    beneath its length, an outlined contour of cobalt
    where the yellow waves cannot reach

    I really like the strength of these words, the precise image it conjures, the sense of atmosphere, ambiance, – it has such a powerfully reflective quality and feel to it … very gripping.

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  4. A wonderful poem. I too wonder how the antler made it as far as it did. Sometimes you find one in the woods but usually nibbled down to a nub.

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  5. The sense of wonderment is a thing of beauty — the second stanza is so well done; its reverberations and shifts are felt. So vivid, almost like one frame of a picture after another. A lovely ekphrastic verse; I love how it got you imagining and drawing from it.
    -HA

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  6. Nature is an old, brilliant girl, who loves her art with humor and wit in it, isn’t she? I love that you let us discover the secret as you did, that we can “Oh!” at the reality while still keeping the sea-fairy-tale bright in our minds. This is stunning. Love the form.

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  7. A wonderful poem. at the risk of being repetitive to all that’s been said before – I wild say superlative

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