The silver sandbanks beckon me
Towards the ebbing sea,
So down I go with shrimping net
And sandwiches for tea.
My favourite gullies stretch away
Towards a distant land
Where sea meets sky beyond the rocks
And bars of untrod sand.
This is the shore where Neptune reigns,
Where mermaids swim and play,
Where tides stand still before they turn
To rise, then flow away.
Among the rocks a thousand pools
Lie cool and green and deep,
With seaweed forests still and dark
All seemingly asleep.
But in their depths the blennies dart
And green crabs hide and dig,
The hermits scuttle out of sight,
Their shells a shade too big.
Here all is calm and I’m alone,
The sun moves on his way
Across the cloudless summer sky
Towards the end of day.
The tide has turned, it’s time to go
Back to the distant shore;
My jam jar’s full of shrimps and crabs,
Tomorrow there’ll be more.
For Helier, Lucy and Bessie – August 1979