Beach Road

I can see the heavy silhouettes of the fishermen’s tractors, vans and boats

From the village, about a mile inland

Up the tarmac road to the beach

The immense shingle bank

Shielding the broad marshes from the North Sea

Whose raging winter tempests threaten to wash away all

These places of summer shelter for long-travelled birds

Pastures for these cattle, now with calves

Whose movement to fresh grass has left splatterings of cowpats

Along the way, smudges of runny herbaceous cakes

Dropped randomly in their wake

Cause me to weave and wend my way

In the shadow of the single emergency telephone wire

Hung between posts haunted by the kestrel

Watching the grasses for little creatures

To feed her young on others’ young

.

CLP 09/05/2020