On the Duver

The invisible, invincible, bullying wind
tears round the masts of pint-sized sailing boats
and whistles through the wires.

It buffets the screeching seagulls,
tossing them through the sky
like drunken dodgem cars.

Moorhens bob between the boats,
paddling with grim determination
against the windblown waves, while

Feather-white clouds scutter and skibble
across the cold-blue sky,
torn to shreds by a taunting squall.


A low tide exposes mops of rotting seaweed
but the rancid smell is dispersed,
thank God, by the fierce breeze.

Shivering trees wag furious fingers
at the boisterous, bumptious, obstreperous wind
that wheels and corkscrews through their branches,

whisking hats from heads,
whirling plastic bags into hedges,
twitching and teasing the scarves of infants on the beach and

tormenting puppies into a flat spin,
making them chase their tails
with frenzied high-pitched, yipping.


Biting at ears and noses and ungloved fingertips,
it drives unwary walkers back inside,
to hide from this irascible, cantankerous, querulous wind.

Last night’s frost nips the grass
and ices the puddles,
crunching underfoot like broken glass.

In the shelter of a gorse bush I huddle,
cold hands gripping a hot mug
as the wind whips by.


*with thanks to the One & Only for his pebbles.

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