The tide is at its ebb. Late sun quick-silvers

the narrowed estuary,  where river and sea

conflict and oyster catchers race upstream.

An ice cream van’s jingle jangle sounds

across the almost empty sands. ‘O sole

mio’… And you are suddenly there –

aged three – digging with purpose into the dusk.

Your daughter – that longed for, longed for joy –

already strives unprompted towards the sun,

scrabbling beyond the bounds of her play mat!

‘…n’aria serena doppo na tempesta!…’

How calm you are, how fulfilled with love!

As we leave the shore for home, mute swans

fly west – their thrilling wing beats song enough.

Somewhere before us, echoing through the streets,

the ice cream van calls: ‘O sole, sole mio.’

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  1. #1 by Ian Craine - August 2nd, 2010 at 13:35

    This is also a beautiful poem, David.

  2. #2 by John Chapman - August 3rd, 2010 at 13:18

    Are we nearly there yet? This must bring back that parental memory ache to all whose children are now grown, and indeed to themselves, if ever they experienced the family seaside holiday. Very evocative.

  3. #3 by Ashen - May 15th, 2015 at 17:20

    Ahw … blessed daughter 🙂

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