Sunday, 16 June 2013

A Long Walk By The Sea


Today’s little poem was written in 1999 and appeared (in its original form) in a poetry magazine (Psychopoetica No. 45) as well as an anthology, With Poetic Grace, Anchor Books (Forward Press) 2000 before I included it in my first major collection. Even so, reading it again from a distance of some fourteen years, I felt compelled to revise it slightly. 

Now, regular readers will know that I have suffered from depression since childhood ( will be 68 later this years) which is the main reason I started putting pen to paper. Creative therapy is a life-line for people like me.

When feeling low, a walk by the sea in all weathers and at any time of day will send me into positive thinking mode and keep me from falling into that awful free-fall that is depression at its worst. I live in London and sometimes a stroll on nearby Hampstead Heath will do the trick, but more often than not I will catch a train to a favourite spot near or far, and spend some time by the sea.  

Scarborough

Some readers may also be interested in a video - shot by my friend Graham Collett in 2012 for my You Tube channel - over which I read two other poems; it shows yours truly walking by the sea on Brighton beach. (See 'Front Seat' in the search field or click on the link below; both poems can be found on the blog and also in the accompanying description.]: 

 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eZLV23r6NdQ

A LONG WALK BY THE SEA

The sea, the sea! Mocking me 
with poems of Love, Peace, Happiness, 
and a gutsy immortality
I could only ever but guess

At work, even at play
I took to wearing masks for faces, 
hid this one well away
under various airs and graces

Then upon my life you came,
began peeling away at the skin;
I resisted, never the same 
once I saw sense and let you in

The sea, the sea! You and me forever, 
proudly...

Copyright R. N. Taber 2009; 2013

[Note: An earlier version of this poem first appeared in 1st eds. of Love and Human Remains by R. N. Taber Assembly Books, 2001;revised ed. in e-format in preparation.]

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