The tide of Spring
arrives like waves
climbing up the beach;
advance, retreat,
advance, retreat…

Holiday Elfje – Breathing

a day
river water comes,
goes, in…out; tide

* * * * * * * * * * * *
As promised, over the next couple of weeks I shall share the short-form poetry that I wrote while I was away. With the exception of this Elfje they were inspired by events during that time so I will post them here in chronological order – apart from Monday’s Haiku, which records an event towards the end of my holiday.



Strong winds blow against
strong tide, pushing up large waves.
We plough through the spray.


October begins.
Summer’s ebb quickens.
Autumn takes the flood tide.


Is that the first flower
I see on the Forsythia?
Though Winter may be lingering
it can’t hold back the tide of Spring.

East Wind

The east wind blows cold.
Above the grey clouds billow,
below the rippling tide rolls in,
the boats rock in their marina berths,
no sea birds call;
all have fled inshore.


Winter and spring
ebb and flow
like the tide on a
rock strewn shore.

The Tide Returns

Under a leaden sky the tide returns.
Breeze-blown ripples eddy and swirl,
inexorably creeping, spreading onwards,
an invading horde of multi-legged spiders,
grappling at mud banks, hauling upwards.
In time the land will rally, repelling boarders.

With the Tide

A pale and hazy sun filters weakly
through a layer of cream and grey gauze clouds
as we lazily sail along the coast
with the tide.

Secret Water

In the early morning light,
silent and still, no breath of wind,
the tide creeps in to claim once more
the creeks and saltings at the land’s back door.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Secret Water is the name Arthur Ransome of “Swallows & Amazons” gave to the Walton Backwaters, an area of tidal creeks and saltings where the North Sea floods in behind Walton-on-the Naze, Essex, below Harwich. It is a beautiful, quiet and unspoilt area and one of our favorite sailing haunts. We recently spent a couple of nights here and left with the tide early in the morning to return to our home berth.

To find out more about Arthur Ransome visit The Arthur Ransome Society here and the Nancy Blackett Trust here.

Site content copyright of Elizabeth Leaper (Libby).

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