An Outpost

In this cold northern outpost
little penetrates the rain
even memories, once bright
have to fight to be sustained
because here
all colour
fades to monochrome
confronted by the onslaught
of the elements, the
flaying of the waves, nature's
way of showing us disdain.

I have thoughts of you in
pales and greys - on
quiet days I try and hear your
pulses on the airwaves but
your signal is too weak to
battle through the heavy
static since 1983: you
could not now reach
my antennae without

The only thing I clearly hear:
defiance from the bleak rocks
standing fast against a
pounding sea giving way
grudgingly with violence
converging on the cliffs - this
neverending rift of attrition
breeding strength to those
born of east coast stock - here
the hardihood is bred
in the blood.

Without you, here
as anywhere, I am
just another incomer to the
tides of life, the ebb
and flow, the to and fro,
never understanding why
I dash against the hardest stones
that you alone could
save me from.

Your sustenance has
lost its power to
feed me from afar, your
wisdom is too quiet, distant, dim
to lance the din of
storms and uproar here - your
morse code fading with
each year - I feel your
salt and pith drain
from me slowly drop by
drop of living pain

until now at
this point in my life
I must rely on the
right kind of luck to
survive - the intermittent
dot and dash of you which
does struggle through
despatches me the message:
I only stop paddling
against the tide when
denied the choice
so to do
and not before -

but when I stand like this
without you on the shore and
in the wind and rain too long
they make me raw, forlorn,
so much the poorer for your lack

all I have is
wealth of wind and water,
tide and time, not
enough to make your signal strong
not enough to bring you back.
Demeter's Fields
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