Edwin Brock

It is a sinking
into sand; marram grass
too sharp to lie on; eyes
stinging in the wind, and
a nerve in the cheek jumping
like an actor playing Dostoevsky.

A few memories remain:
the seal pup
dragging its wound up the beach
showing a ripped belly
and crying for help;
terns dive-bombing
the air above their nests;
the flotsam fox
bitten and chewed
scourged and scraped
but still recognisable

and always the grey North Sea
disappearing into a grey sky.

Beachcombing between the season's
limbs to discover

or coming off the frost-crisp dunes
rejoicing in ownership.

Sixty-eight years should burst
the walls of a skull with this;
but mostly it drifts
like fine sand, or bangs
against the groynes whenever
the wind blows towards the land.