The Binding of the Sea

The Binding of the Sea

would the tide never stop coming in
inching ever higher as the months passed

there were only two roads out
each burdened with over-familiarity
all novelty quagmire-sunk as if
	the peninsula had capitulated
	and the sea invaded the land

going further afield
they sought pubs in out-of-the-way locations
explorers for the source of something
until the travelling became all there was

as he broke away
the sound of waves followed him
	university in a port town
	volunteering in a sub-Saharan Atlantic village
	his first real job in a cathedral city near the coast

	a West Indian island perhaps the ultimate capitulation

later
the irony of ending up in the middle
land everywhere and the coast out of reach
	exposing his longing for the chill breeze
	the sounds of feet on shingle
	the salted aroma of the sea

“The Binding of the Sea” is taken from my latest collection, The Homelessness of Child.