of paint since the coronation
off-square doors, lost-key padlocks
thistles growing through the floor, toward sun-stars
in flapping tin roofs. Rusting
chain, ends of heavy, greasy rope
paint brush bristles stuck together
stiff as handles
all pushed into piles of cobwebbed planks
warped ply, dented drums
barnacled posts, barbed wire, beer bottles
with silverfished labels, franger packets
bent nails and one brass screw.
Their demolition was front page news
they were deserted long ago, for the marina
by those who loved them.
The shrugging waves
care even less and know the world’s not flat.
Originally published in Gathering Force, 1997