Ice on the Beach
One single sheet of sprung light.
Touched here with the toe of your boot
it hurts in a distant part.
Dream stuff, with its own internal acoustic.
Striking it with a stick raises
a shocked note, a white bruise under the skin –
the physiology of ice on sand
is strange, we have not mapped it.
The sea can only scorch the edge.
This whole bay is locked
under a lid of referred pain.
At one end, a tanker
nudges out of the rivermouth.
In its wash, the ice shelf
But thirty miles south,
in another town, it creaks
under the pier, where someone kneels,
staring down like a god
through a damaged sky, onto a wilderness
of ridges and blue shadows.
Uncollected poem, © Jean Sprackland 2005, used by permission of the author.