February Beach, Uisken, Isle of Mull
Cold whack, bladderwrack.
We’re down at Uisken with a fishbox,
filling up on seaweed good for veg.
Dad strolls, in search of laver bread,
but only finds the barnacles
and, disappointed, must make do
with the low tide’s chunks of marble,
Iona green, and the aluminium bones
of an old cremated caravan. And I‘m amazed
by the long, low foreshore wall,
missed before, by blindness, mine,
of someone not quite looking.
Dad looks and sees the laboured edges
of some poor crofter’s rent to dukes.
I hope, we hope, he fled to Glasgow,
liked it, or at least enough,
and never did come bobbing back
to the cold whack, bladderwrack.
by Seth Crook
Editor’s Note: Tetrameter and scattered caesurae lend this poem a strong backbone that nicely echoes the subject matter. Sandwiched between a single repeated line, the images of a cold coast and seaweed lend a simple family outing a sense of history.