Cave Time and Sea Changes

August 2010

The cave is the size of a parish church.
You enter the vestibule like a pilgrim
and address the water as it gulps back

or sighs forward, swell by swell. Sea is traction
engineered by the drag of sun and moon,
and its heaved weight has quarried out this barrow.

Greens and ochres and cobalts ink the walls,
but offer no windows of light, no icon.
Your mania was stilled here in these pools.

You’d almost forgotten your slow approaches
to the sloshing cave mouth. Those seagull flocks
were grace notes rising from new-scored horizon.


The seventh poem in the title sequence of ‘Cave Time and Sea Changes’, the third section of The Navigators. Listen to Matthew Clegg reading the full 12-poem sequence in a sea cave at the North Landing, Flamborough Head, East Yorkshire:

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