Harsh Coast

by Jenny Morris

The sea must whisper, hiss or roar.
It strews the sand with hollow bones.
It nudges cliffs, invades the shore
and swallows homes.
The waters pulse like rolling wheels
on yellow fish that gleam as brass.
Black flowers by the broken creels
are dripping glass.
In mist the gulls shrill, mew and taunt
redundant foghorns with their screams.
Those lost and mournful echoes haunt
our silent dreams.
At dusk a chain of drowned men wades
to shore. Their footprints leave no trace.
The chimes of metal music fade
as flood tides race.
The wild geese fly, cloud shadows drift.
In crooked towns we wait for night,
for ill-starred ships, for storms to lift,
for second sight.
Wild waves grow dim. All glimmers gone.
The ruined sky is black and stark.
All night the moon is moving on
to break the dark.