On Dingle Marsh

Drowned Dunwich, Anglian Atlantis

Former glory a street-plan beneath the wave

Where the bells toll still or so we’re told

This is Sebald’s water-logged land.


Thin shingle line a Canutean effort

Banked against the relentless tide

And Parliament’s indifferent shrug

As the map is redrawn by the sea.


The skirts of this land draw back

But the ankles are muddied

And the petticoats silted

The brimming tide bides time.


The marshes halt the forest’s march

Vanguard of the sea’s return

The flooded field and brinied earth

Is now the realm of the wing.


The Harrier drifts upon the vibrant air

Avocet our most graceful sprite

The Lapwing, Peewit or the Plover

Thrice named, thrice called, thrice loved.


Larks brightly herald their own glory

While the Bittern booms the final story

For he whose reach has too long tried

In defeat will retreat before the tide.



Simon Conner


Easter 2009

(for Alan ~ Happy Birthday)

© Simon Conner 2020