Poems on the Tide: 'River Meets Sea' and 'Sand or Shops?', Changing Landscapes and Panoramas by the Sea
Each day, I walk along the prom, look across the bay and marvel at the ever-changing landscape. I can never gauge how windy it will be, how many people will be about or whether the tide will be in or out, though strangely it seems out more often than in! Just coincidence, I know.
Wandering By the SeaClick thumbnail to view full-size
The sky is vast but the horizon can be as sharp as diamonds or shrouded in mystery. The sea might be calm as a mill pond, have a deep sinister swell or be crested with white horses.
Calm or Mysterious?
Rivers and Sea
Two rivers merge before winding out to meet the sea. The smaller Brue hosts the marina with yacht masts clanking their greetings. It joins forces with the mightier Parrett which has busier banks and a tidal bore when the tide forces itself in, before the river flows once more to make its contribution to the sea.
One blustery, sunny day in October, I caught the tide exactly on the turn. The wind was bitter, scything across the bay north/south and the water was choppy. I could see precisely where the river was vying with the tide as the white horses were higher and the currents swirled; outgoing river and incoming tide seemed to be at odds as though neither wanted to give way. You could see the ensuing battle as the water rose in contention.
A poem formed as I watched this battle of the fresh and salt waters before me.
River and Sea Meet and Turn
River or Sea?
Where river flows to advancing tide, the waters splash, white horses clash, so, writhing, wake the waves.
Sea surges ‘tween mud banks, to wrest the river’s rein; they meet white horses’ frantic foam,
Striving for supremacy of the seas, turning the tide, tossing turbulent spray.
Spray soars from deep-sea grey, tumbling tide on tetchy swirl where mud mixes with power.
Marauding armies of moon-driven mass, the waxing waters drive, white horses cede their place.
The ebb and flow play out their dance, each and every day,
beneath the waves a power of place, the river arrives, the sea accepts
but the battle of salt and fresh survives.
River Brue Joins the Parrett
Nature... to Inhabitants
That is nature doing its thing, carrying out its daily routine.
Let’s look now at the town, the people and how they interact with their environment, be they visitors or residents.
Sand or Shops?
Sunny day or blown away,
by the sea’s the place to be!
Toes in sand or hear brass band,
fly a kite when winds do bite!
99 or lolly’s fine,
fish and chips, mmm.., smack your lips!
Sea gulls steal or children squeal,
hide your food, the birds are rude!
Highest tide or waters bide
way outside the borders wide.
Arcade near or smallest pier,
stilts that grow from beach below.
Dogs run mad or donkeys pad
whilst lifeboat crew rescue the few -
those who fall or ignore the call
to keep away from quicksand’s sway.
Summer sun or winter’s fun
when Carnival enraptures all,
Burnham’s sport or Brean Down’s fort,
fresh air is what we share.
Join us, come! or miss the fun,
we welcome you, every one.
This is a soft ice cream in a cone with a chocolate flake stuck in it
In Britain it is an ice lolly on a stick, not a sweet!
the local carnival starts in Bridgwater on the first Saturday of November, goes to Burnham on the Monday, then other towns for the rest of the week. It celebrates Bonfire Night (or Guy Fawkes' night).
Town by the Sea
Marram Grass on the Dunes
The stretch of coastline runs from Brean Down in the north, down to the mouth of the Parrett in the South, just below the hill known as Brent Knoll. It offers sea and sand, rivers, boating and fishing, as well as a National Trust protected area of flora on Brean Down. The dunes and marshes also have a protected status and hide the International Golf Course between Berrow and the coast (half way along as you look from Brean Down).
It’s my home. In the summer I can share it with visitors; in the winter it becomes cosy and we residents jealously guard it for ourselves!
Holidays by the Sea
Do you go to the seaside?
© 2018 Ann Carr