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Bristol , United Kingdom
I'm co-director of the Leaping Word Poetry Consultancy, which provides advice for poets on writing, editing and publishing, as well as qualified counselling support for those exploring personal issues in their work - https://theleapingword.com. My fifth poetry collection, Learning Finity, is now available from Indigo Dreams or directly from me.

Wednesday 11 December 2019

Purton Hulks in Winter Mud

The last time I went to Purton, it was at a very different time of year: high summer and so hot that an escape from Bristol was imperative, and the next day at work that one evening spent twenty miles upstream felt, in retrospect, as if I'd been on a week's holiday.

This time it wasn't just that it was getting dark at two-thirty in the afternoon; it felt as if the day hadn't got light at all.

Just a rim on the horizon.

Up on the bank beyond the canal, the abandoned hulks that form the bulwark between it and the Severn were diving not into the waving grass of summer with its foamy seeds, but mud.

It was all very dreichy.

The tide was racing in and had already covered the wrecks of the tankers Arkendale and Wastdale, which struck and destroyed the Severn Railway Bridge one foggy night in 1960, with tragic consequences. 

A good reason for Son the Younger, whose first visit it was, to come back another day.

We squelched our way downstream.

I'd forgotten to change my shoes for walking boots before I'd left Bristol, and didn't fancy negotiating the mud in the dark anyway, so we were careful not to overstay. 

I'd like to come back again on a bright winter's morning in frost.

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