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last update:

17th Jan19

Jean Watkins photo
e-mail Jean

poetry favourites:
Second Light
Two Rivers Press
The North
The Interpreter‘s House
Poetry in Aldeburgh


and in the shop…
collections –
“Precarious Lives”
Two Rivers Press





They took us to the edge of the world
where chaos heaved – a huge grey beast
slavering at the sand, sucking at stones.
Aged three I knew, refused to tempt it
though my sister ran shrieking in and out
shocked by the cold, thrilled at her daring.
I can taste the salt of my father’s broken promise
when he let me go, water closed its lid,
in a green element I knew electric panic.
Now we herd between flags, minded by lifeguards
mindful of its malevolence; the airbed drifting
quietly to deep water, the pincers of an undertow.
I have heard its roar, seen fathoms flung on rocks
at Hell’s Mouth, Bryher, exploding in white and silver,
read of the wrecks littering the Scillies’ seaways.
A TV reporter on a beach points out the cliff
where a freak wave snatched two boys, or the spot
where a man trying to save his dog was drowned.

Jean Watkins

first published in anthology, Running Before the Wind, 2013, Grey Hen Press,
ISBN 978-0-9552952-9-4;
in collection, Precarious Lives, 2018, Two Rivers Press,
ISBN 978-1-909747-41-8