It’s hard to accurately describe the tugging rustle
of the tide dragging pebbles back
into its depths,
reaching with foamy fingers
that half-make you want to grip them and be carried away yourself.
Not quite shattering glass,
not quite a handful of cascading shells.
It’s distinctive, a cry of longing to stay
yet needing to go.
Indeed, it leaves tears behind,
transforming rocky crevices into miniature worlds.
Famous occupants include the armoured side-walkers.
Hunkered down, it’s easy to miss them;
their backs blend well with the stage.
Upset one with clumsy feet or hands, however, and you’ll know.
Then we have those with softer bodies, who like to switch things up by probing vacant shells,
bottle caps, concave pieces of this and that –
property surveying, we’d call it.
As for compulsive scavengers,
the prawns never seem to tire of that line of work,
skilfully avoiding the numbing flowers shaking their tassels
for a chance of collecting organic debris to feast on.
And all of them waiting, waiting,
to again be blanketed by the sea.
This poem is part of a project I’m doing to raise money for the RSPB, a UK wildlife conservation and protection charity. Being autistic, nature is often my only place of solace, and I want to do all I can to protect it. As I’m not very comfortable around other people, most of the standard ways of helping out (volunteering, ‘traditional’ fundraisers etc.) were not a good fit for me, so I came up with #52weeksofnaturepoetry, where I have to post a nature poem here on this blog each week for an entire year without fail.
If you’d like to help, please share this poem to encourage others to take joy in nature, and if you have the time and means to donate, you can do so here. Let’s help keep our wildlife wild!