English poetry

Poems in English

MOTIF

MOTIF

Three notes I allowed
Aloud to sum the August
Beachiness of

Herring gull
Railway pigeon
Otherwise birdless

Fishless conjoin –
Rust cliff and water world
Beneath reflected sky;

That order/disorder/chaos
Of iron colony salinity
In all its erosive pungency.

Which instrument to choose
Bowed blown plucked
Or shell-smash hammered?

One two or three?
Which pitch above or below
The shoreline of middle C¿

What time-line to let it linger/
Sound?
How hushed or loud?

(One)
Deep deep dotted quaver
Bflat bassooned like a train
A cliff reverb

A call beneath the bay in mezzo forte
Average I believe
For the time of year.

(Two)
Higher – filled with summer hope
A dotted crotchet F
To fur the shallows

Prick the beach dog ears
Ring calcite crusted pipe
And sandstone blunts submerged.

(Three)
Then higher still to haunt:
An A flat dotted minim lashed
To dotted crotchet reaching

Reaching under cloud-stretch
To fill kid’s shadowed sand holes
And sad hearts wanting.



Poem MOTIF - Graham Burchell