For Barbara and John Huddart
On this calm summer evening the North Sea falls
unheard on the wide sands below the castle
in whose inner ward the play is set – and we
(an eclectic collection of friends)
have brought folding chairs, prosecco, pop,
and fish suppers from Seahouses nearby
along this coast of raiders and saints.
‘My bounty is as boundless as the sea,
My love as deep; the more I give to thee,
The more I have, for both are infinite,’
says Juliet, a canny lass – though all
four players are canny lasses in this
very British, outdoor, touring ‘tale of woe’.
In the interval the sun sets like fire,
a titian furnace stretched across The Borders,
out-performing any artifice –
and when, in the last act, beyond the charmed
arena of spots and floods, night falls
and the air chills, bats, out of ancient crevices,
flitter between the words and over the shore.
Note: See The Handlebards.