Warrick Wynne’s Poetry Pages

reading, writing and the connections

The Cursed Family

Seven drowned in thirty years,
they were called the cursed family
by the Telegraph,
achieved a brief and bitter kind of fame
in their ends.
All went the same way,
drowned differently;
how the last ones
must have dreaded the sea
the green foaming sterile rivers,
the deathly blue of the lake
and its slippery shore,
the mossy canal
by the lane near the pub.

I’d move inland,
but you can drown in a bucket
or a bath, open your mouth
and water pours in naturally,
as water fills in spaces.
Perhaps being undrowned is stranger,
staying afloat is a temporary art.
Or accept the curse; when a sailor fell
into the Danube his superstitious fellows
called from above, ‘Don’t struggle, it’s God’s will’.
But we do. We kick our legs and flail,
push our head above the edge to see.
We hold our breath, deny the obvious:
that we are marked, that such liquid stuff
cannot be resisted.

Written by warrick

December 24, 2007 at 3:19 pm

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