I am a cold, grey, stony beach

in the south of England.

Low clouds

sleep above

all the sea carries

and leaves behind

for birds

and others.

I hear you walking

over pebbles and stones

the soft clink and scrape

of shingles

equal to your weight.

I even see

your thinking




If this is what I am

then what is my purpose?

To remain the same as I always was?

Impatient still beach,

witness to plunging and surging

waiting at the edge

weathering reaction

I remain


yet altered.


Inviting the waves,

I beckon my nothingness.

I ask for nothing.

I just am.

I accommodate seaweeds,

dead fish, coke cans, smashed up bits of shell,

endless snows of polystyrene in tangled nets

and all things

drifted from the deep

on my gentle,

cold, shore.

I will ask nothing of you,

expect nothing.

If emptiness is disappointing

remember it is transient.

The beach is calm;

the lonely beach

just is.


I could have gone to the mountain,

much preferring

the winds over oceans and seagulls’ squall

to that of another

sucking and tugging

at my breasts;

new teeth grinding –

dreading birth as much as death

placenta severed,

belonging nowhere.

I could have gone to the mountain

and prayed

at Sylvia’s shredded



But here my peace

is punctuated

by waves of turquoise

gentle lapping,

the swell of violent storms –


I can do nothing about,

but wait for shape

to very slowly change.


My beach is an orphanage

for drifters,

all broken things.

Worn down by the relentless surf

we ask nothing of each other.

We just are.