Tankerton Slopes

No longer cliff but grassed incline
at forty-five degrees down to the beach,
and the turning sea dull grey not blue
laps the shingle with wintery monotony,
while beyond the undulating waves
a regiment of three-bladed turbines
stand white against the dull grey horizon,
turn in the wind and turn the wind
into a current that defies the tide
and flows towards the waiting land.

Mid-March Snow

The leafless branches of the blackthorn
have produced snow-white blossom,
always an early sign of spring,
but late snow has dusted false flowers
across the bare branches of the latent trees
and once again spring will be postponed.

Early Birds

It is still dark but already
another day is being serenaded
with a fanfare of trills and arpeggios,
a pre-dawn chorus from an orchestra
hidden in the suburban trees
while beyond down by the sea
the local flock of gulls swirl
and screech all out of tune.

Over the Fence

No fairies at the bottom of my garden,
instead on the other side of the fence
and ineffectively screened by a row
of dying or decrepit sad cypresses
an old ruinous light-industrial site,
low buildings abandoned at least
fifteen years ago and now half-hidden
by trees, blackberries, bindweed and ivy,
an unofficial nature reserve,
a reservoir of plants and animals
most of which are aggressively invasive,
brambles, convolvulus and ivy threatening
to spread to my side of the fence
and the fence no barrier to foxes
which I have seen scramble over it
to play uninvited on my lawn.

Andrew Belsey

If you have any thoughts on this poem, Andrew Belsey would be pleased to hear them.