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Photograph: ‘Aber Falls’ – ©Sylvia Selzer 2000


Anger, despair – torrential, unstoppable –
possesses me, unprompted. Undeserved,
you suffer it like hail. It leaves no signs.
Your heart is adamant, ever yielding.

Rainwater, falling on the marshy uplands,
courses through the thick glacial veneer –
beneath the main road near the chip shop,
past second homes and holiday lets,
under the promenade and by the pub –
onto the beach and into the oceans.

Safe behind glass, from our rented apartment,
white and spare like a sepulchre or a flag,
we watch a storm rise far out at sea then roll
inexorably towards us, obscuring
all – and hammer on our window like a door.

At low tide, we walk along the sands and round
the headland, rooks rising in clacking dudgeon
from the high rocks. In the wide estuary,
a solitary egret fishes. Returning,
at high tide, through littoral woods of elder
and ash, we walk at the foot of the sandstone cliffs –
rainwater flowing from fissures, seeping
into silent pools edged by ferns and fronds.

On the horizon: a warship anchors
at the ebb in Holyhead’s sea roads;
Manx is a stretch of cloud; and the Great Orme
the sea serpent the first Norsemen named it,
half submerged, sleeping or waiting.




© Copyright David Selzer
4 Responses
  • David Cracknell
    May 19, 2009

    I have only just dipped into the new website but I loved this poem – especially the “rooks rising in clacking dudgeon”. Living landscape…


  • David
    May 26, 2009

    One of the great pleasures and challenges in writing poetry is evoking memorable, moving pictures through a handful of words.

  • Anne Wynne
    July 29, 2009

    Unbidden – It was the word chip shop that led me to this poem on the “Tag” list. What I liked about it was the way you placed this very emotional passionate opening against the “everyday” in the next verse. Loved the description of the holiday apartment – could really relate to it. We had an awful holiday in Anglesey about 5 years ago and the rain and the sparceness of this bungalow we stayed in all came flooding back to me. Your poems stir feelings and memories which I suppose is what writers want.

    • David
      August 11, 2009


      That’s exactly what I do want, Anne. Good to see the tags are working. Real serendipity!

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