Grandfather Seaweed

Is the tidal law,
For it is ever commanding
And in some ways stronger
Than the day’s diurnal yaw
And opening and closing eye.

Half his time
In soporific muse
And daydream,
With his cheek
Wet to the grey glutin
Of sediments
And the cool sulphur stink
Of mud layered greasy.

There are birds in his daydream;
Seagulls and waders patterning
The slick shiny surfaces
With criss cross footprints.
If only he could raise himself up!
But his body is limp to the rock
And deflated on the mud flat.

But then on the turning tide:
First joy to his lifted toe tips,
In salt water push.
And then to his green weed calves,
And then his body
And his weighty sargasso clothes.

Soon the daydreams seep away
And all is bluegreen oxygen
And the free thoughts
Of kelp
Suspended in the water column.
He is fully awake
When his bladder rack fringe
Lifts from his barnacle face
And shimmers and depicts
The current flow
And the playfulness
Of water’s irregularity.

Now he breathes
His water-lung
Saltwater full,
And is bright in his octopus eye,
Excited in saline energy,
Full as the moon,
Full as Equinox:
His mind
Teaming with ideas
Of fish
And aquatic snails
And colourful sponge
And the jewels of anemones,
And the bright eyed shrimp
And the lobster’s wariness
And the majestic conger eel,
And the multitude nameless
Who peak tentative from beneath:

All of which he collects
With silver brown hands
And algal finger-leaves,
Adhering them
To his stone skin
And the nooks and crevices therein,
Making himself beautiful
And decorative.
The under-garden home,
His living benthic cloak,
Gathered up
And to the underworld
To his legacy
And grandchildren,
In wet plethora
And numerous cold blooded.

© Ben Truesdale and distilledvoice, 2015 ‎

Beauty Happens


Comforts us
With its work
In sweeping curves
And the pebbles
To grain equality,
In gradual conformity
To the long shore laws
Of water physical
And air scouring
And light,
Daily ultra violet.

As the globe spins
On smooth mathematics
And physics
Impregnated with a spark
Of living light


© Ben Truesdale and distilledvoice, 2015


Man’s Detritus
Cast high
With crisp seaweed
Under the bleaching sun.
All is soluble
In the end,
For the solvent
Washes twice a day
And more
In salt air
Metal is eaten
Mottled bite
By rust smudge
And leafy fragmentation,
And plastic twine
Frays and becomes powdery.
The plastic bottle too
Loses integrity,
Degraded by the claiming sea,
Scrubbing every edge
To the smooth curve of bays
And roundish pebbles consistency:
Perhaps mocking us
For our solid forms
And legacies,
Our memories
Held aloft and alive –
To never die:
Or perhaps treating us
As equals on the path
To unbecoming
And the endless tide
Of things passed
And passing
To the voluminous being:

Then from dissolution

And constituents floating,

Of something new and free.

© Ben Truesdale and distilledvoice, 2015.

In The Meniscus


In the meniscus
The whole reflected world.

Even in the shine
Of the pebbles,
Glossed wet,
There are mirrors
Two fold:

In the painted light
And in the seeing.


And In the sheen
Of the sea’s damp hold

Stones gleam transformed.
Surfaces everywhere

Like shields,
Like barriers
To hold the selves
Of things,
Make them impervious
And themselves

Stones are whole
Behind their skin,
Behind the thin film
And that,
Reflected on its surface.

And the sea too
Is deep
Below it’s meniscus.

© Ben Truesdale and distilledvoice, 2015.

From Blueness


Sea born rhythms
Arrive in blueness pulse
After blueness pulse,
And where the shallows
Show in pale shoals
And the globes of stones
Glow egg-like and shimmering,
The waves rise troubled
And breathe the air
To the new azure
Of their turbulent lungs,
Curling and introvert
In their wet work
Until the almost perfect
Curve of the rolling surf
Slips from the form and balance
Of its clothes
And seeks abandon
In bubble
And white water surge:
All its energy fragmented
And absorbed
In the froth and melee
Of interface.

© Ben Truesdale and distilledvoice, 2015.