hello goodbye

hello goodbye

 

I saw her from the window

of my signal-stalled train

stranded beside the bay

 

she wore

a soft green hat

a bright red scarf

dungarees

 

again and again

 

she threw a stick

for a dog to fetch

from the waves

 

and in between

 

a hovering half-dance

collecting pebbles

she put in a satchel

worn around her neck

 

I opened the window

 

I waved

I shouted hello

 

she waved

she helloed

 

the carriage jolted

the train moved on

 

I waved goodbye

she waved goodbye

we waved goodbye

 

seconds later

I pulled the cord

jumped onto the track

 

clambering seaweed groynes

my sandals snapped

 

razor sea-shells

jagged stones

tore my feet

 

icy crab-pools

clouded blood-red red

 

an empty beach

but for the dog

black-headed gulls

and a sandy stick

 

the dog

pawed the stick

stepped away

stepped back  

pawed the stick

looked quizzically

at me - at the stick - at me

 

‘get my drift’

 

I got his drift

 

I over-armed the stick

far into the swell

‘go fetch boy fetch’

 

the dog

plunged in

swam out

fetched

swam back

mouthing home

a bright red scarf

◄ Hugging Lauren - WOMAD 1990 (remix)

poring away ►

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