The Eroding Shore

Ben Tufnell

The shadows, remote –
the fugitive memories,
remainings and echoes
of vague history -
are as quick and contingent
as the fox or the hawk, even
the hare, those wild and
unruly shades, fleeting,
just seen, little more
than a shadow, a tint,
a flicker of presence
breaking the edge of the field
of vision, or crossing the lane
where the willows sway,
above the reeded stream
which quietly winds
a slow silvery tread
to the sea.
The sea, just a few miles
from here, as the crow flies,
which, hypnotic, pulls
at the land, stone by stone.
From the shingle banks
which yield slowly,
thirty years ago, alone,
I flew a kite.
It seems to me
It still hangs there.

Ben Tufnell is a writer and curator based in London. His most recent book is 'In Land: Writings Around Land Art And Its Legacies' (Zero Books, 2019).

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