Happen

Yesterday the sea was at our shoulder
but we couldn’t see it.
Long after the fog had drifted over us

Wolf Rock Lighthouse was still reminding us
in its old fashioned, diaphragmatic way to take care
of sudden precipices and overhangs,

as invisible as the skylark singing somewhere above us now,
or the shrew you just spotted
holding its breath in the pink thrift.

Almost thirty years since we last walked this path.
Most of the coves we approach
with no recollection of having been here before,

except perhaps some brief murmuration
in your memory, or mine.
Yet still they feel like home.

I make another promise to leave my job
when we get back,
start writing poems again
(being careful not to use too many yesterdays),

tell you once again how Dad taught me to swim
by throwing the ball out a bit further each time,
until my feet left the bottom and started pedalling.

β€˜Little boat, why are you out so far?’ you say,
not hearing me.

 

 

Mark Czanik‘s writing and artwork has appeared in 3AM, Cyphers, Riptide, Southword, Wasafiri, The Frogmore Papers, The Interpreter’s House, and elsewhere. He was born in Hereford and now lives in Bath.