This is in memory of my parents.

At Heysham

Beachcombing on Heysham shore
I find a sacred shell, a charismatic conch
Embedded in a hirsute promontory.
To the unconfirmed eye it could be mistaken
For a derelict cow byre or fisherman's hut,
But this humble fossil has clues enough
For those who crave to know beginnings.
I touch its flaking fabric, running my fingers
Over its honest features, its bruised body,
Feeling the skin and sinew of its makers.
I hear windswept whispers from the gables,
Soft echoes of pulsating prayers and plainsong
Incised into the niches and grooves of the walls.
I see steadfast graves cut into the rippling rock,
Empty now save for bodies of prisoned water,
Reflecting their communion with the birds,
Black priestly crows and white choral gulls,
The new chapter of this unending story.

Chris Fernie, 2009

Poetry by Chris Fernie
Read 366 times
Written on 2009-06-25 at 11:36

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