Away the Land’s Hold

 i.m. Julia Bentham  


Thirteen children wheel your bed down

the road to the shingly tide-line,

the sea’s great oxygen machine.

Plugged into a featureless moon

it sucks in the pebbles, pauses, exhales,

breathes for you, before you set sail.

The waves practise their scales,

feel for arias between the stones.

Thirteen children kneel, rest tired heads,

a shoal of hands on your blankets. 

Not long now… The music rises,

shoulders the heavy bed, eases

away the land’s hold as we let go

and your song, dear sister, returns to the sea.