The Lincolnshire Coast is just Flat and there is Nothing There


The tide is out, way out, it ran away to sea
And left upon the sand its salted legacy:

Old words in shallow pools, hear ‘heahtid’, ‘ebba’, ‘flod’,
All relic and un-spoke, time smoothed, buried in mud.

Net fragments, plastic this, sea coal and rusted that,
Unsharpened shards of glass, ancient trees turned black.

The slowest sinking wreck, a rack of wooden ribs,
Barnacled and burst, an undone manifest.

Some resting bob of seals, stone-like, all aligned,
Hunt-tired from the night flight over Doggerland.

Sanderlings and gulls bicker with the tide,
Dispute the liminal on the ever-moving line.

Snail, clam and razor shell, a bottle; no message,
A tale in aftermath, such busy emptiness.

You bring your bloated self, a supplicant to prayer,
Because you are so full and there is nothing here.

By Diane Seddon

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