The Empty Benches.

The dogs, marking

sand with brief print,

ancient scratch-language,

lengthen and, boundless, plunge

at the cones of surf,

smashing them, barking.

*

A lone figure travails the blown beach. He drags a suitcase. He looks up from his feet and seems surprised to find another living here and, as we pass, I see that the suitcase is a lobster pot; a smashed collection of wire and wood. I trail the draglines of the broken box, toward the headland; unravelling history.

*

Reaching the steps, I leave the beach and

follow the slow curve of concrete and iron

that leads, solemn, to St. Mary’s, and is lined

with the empty benches.

*

The past days gather at this moment,

so I read their names, their anniversaries;

the hyphenated space between.

15 thoughts on “The Empty Benches.

  1. “Time present and time past/ Are both perhaps present in time future/ And time future contained in time past./ If all time is eternally present/ All time is unredeemable.”

    Yule magic to you, Nick, and wishes for an interesting New Year

    Liked by 1 person

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