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  • Writer's pictureTuur Verheyde


To lie sinking

In sheet-seas,

Choking on salt

Sweat delirium;

A stomach ache

Like cargo crates

Swaying to the rhythm

Of unseen wave-roiling

In the crammed hull of

The bed-body; a headache

Like thunderclaps booming

Silently in the darkened

Room; a fever sizzling

As the heat of my steamer

Furnace meets the foam

Of bedsheet cold.

I writhe in the coiling flat,

Eyes upwards, searching

For a safe port in the ceiling

Greys, for a sign of abating,

For a messenger gull, heralding

Landings, solid and steady.

Then a flickering, a recurring

Witch-fire flashing in the dark

Shadow crease of the chimney

Column. For a moment, I forget

Myself, whispering:

Hail, lurid lighthouse square,

Little lightning box, lead me

Away from these wearisome

Waters, into stern darkness,

Into bulky daylight brightness,

Out of these rock-bladed depths.

I squint and see my

Monoxide meter blinking


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