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LandSea Divide

I can be drawn as an inkblacked vein on a map

I can be a healed scar where land once bled

I can be a seawashedoasiswhere a universe of imagination dwells.

I can be a space of sorrow where the ocean’s solemn sighs prevail. 

I can hold countless grains of sand, an earthly echo of countless celestial stars

I can convey feelings of wonder, or despair

I can be a purepoint of pilgrimage where exuberance of youth can be found

I can speak to your inner soul

I can take your breath away

I can be the divide whereshadows of history play on by the water’s edge.

I can be a whispered promise in the lightof dawn

I can be a refuge for those fortunate to escape life’s relentless fray

I can be the fracture in time’s fragile spectrum

I can be the end of somethinga start of everything

I can receiveyour footprint in my softness for a spell,yet all must fade away

I can be a haven of peace, harmony, heaven

I can be hell, an inferno of war, discord 

I can be a sanctuary from life’s bitter sword

I can be a pulsing border where dreams and nightmares collide 

Salt waters, the feet of many, ideas have crossed over me

I can be barren, and forbidding

I can be bursting with vibrant liferhythm, and welcoming

I can be a windswept landmark to the continuance of being

I can vanish in an instant beneath the fury of apocalyptic storms

I can be rebornfrom seagouged rocks,almighty forces punishing my imperfections

I can be an endless smoothness of strand stretching back to childhood

I can be a citadel with a lighthouse and those entrusted to watch over us nearby

I can recall thunderous war cries of Romans, Vikings, Saxons and Normans striding through

I can be a resting place for shipwrecks, poor sods drowned and even buried treasure

like to weave an aura of hope around all those seeking solace 

I can be open to elemental dramas,a theatre of waves and living things

I can be witness tochippedaway secrets of the past

I have remained a sacred narrow strip fusingfluid motion of the ocean withhardfixed energy of earthly land

What am I?

I am the coast.

 


A poem by Nicholas Mackey

London, U.K.

1.42pm, Tuesday 26th September 2023

Comments 3

 
Rosy Cole on Saturday, 01 June 2024 11:56

Powerful phrases. We are an island/islands 'set in a silver sea' and it's so easy to overlook that great swathes of the world have no real conception of the coast. You won't believe this, but it is one hundred percent true (and bears deep reflection on where we are as a nation) that around 3% of students in a West Sussex college of two thousand, who live within half a mile of the sea, have never seen it. One even denied that Britain had a coast: it was all part of Europe. (In some senses, we wish!) My generation knew in primary school all about Gondwana, how the five Continents and seven seas came to be, and that Britain was surrounded by coast. The upshot is that a special licence has been obtained to ferry these children to the coast where some truths about geology have caused no little wonderment.

As someone whose ancestors have a long maritime history, I find this utterly mind-blowing.

Powerful phrases. We are an island/islands 'set in a silver sea' and it's so easy to overlook that great swathes of the world have no real conception of the coast. You won't believe this, but it is one hundred percent true (and bears deep reflection on where we are as a nation) that around 3% of students in a West Sussex college of two thousand, who live within half a mile of the sea, have never seen it. One even denied that Britain had a coast: it was all part of Europe. (In some senses, we wish!) My generation knew in primary school all about Gondwana, how the five Continents and seven seas came to be, and that Britain was surrounded by coast. The upshot is that a special licence has been obtained to ferry these children to the coast where some truths about geology have caused no little wonderment. As someone whose ancestors have a long maritime history, I find this utterly mind-blowing.
Nicholas Mackey on Saturday, 22 June 2024 11:24

Thank you Rosy for taking the time to make a well-considered and apt comment - as you always do.
Your generosity of spirit encourages me to carry on what I (attempt, nay struggle to) do: to write - to create something new from a deep reservoir of ideas swimming about in my mind that, once composed, is then hopefully deemed of value by the reader.

Thank you Rosy for taking the time to make a well-considered and apt comment - as you always do. Your generosity of spirit encourages me to carry on what I (attempt, nay struggle to) do: to write - to create something new from a deep reservoir of ideas swimming about in my mind that, once composed, is then hopefully deemed of value by the reader.
Rosy Cole on Thursday, 27 June 2024 17:53

I've been at it for half a century, Nicholas, and I'm still learning! :-) Truly. It was always my hope with Green Room that comments and discussion would arise from the actual content of posts rather than the quality of the writing. I don't think G R could, or should, venture that. It's not that kind of forum and not what the public wants to read. After all, the soundest advice is: 'Become anonymous to yourself and imagine you are the reader.' Just keep doing it. The rest will follow. We can all improve!

I've been at it for half a century, Nicholas, and I'm still learning! :-) Truly. It was always my hope with Green Room that comments and discussion would arise from the actual content of posts rather than the quality of the writing. I don't think G R could, or should, venture that. It's not that kind of forum and not what the public wants to read. After all, the soundest advice is: 'Become anonymous to yourself and imagine you are the reader.' Just keep doing it. The rest will follow. We can all improve!
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