It didn’t need to be a big ripple
nudging its reed-nest for the overstep
to plop into the up-plump of the breast,
and the coot to clear into the stream of itself
(not the moorhen), spooking along as if scared
of its reflection. It was only the Slea,
where no eagles peered, herons rarely stabbed,
where foxes didn’t grin, panting down the bank.
So maybe it felt like when this ripples in,
and I reflect on the river flush with summer,
as buoyant as the coot on gloom water,
and the pulse scoots through the channels as though
it could outrun the clutch of what it left
behind, what it could scarcely conceive then
would come to overrun it in the end.
Iain Twiddy studied literature at university, and lived for several years in northern Japan. His poems have been published in The Poetry Review, Poetry Ireland Review, The Stinging Fly, The Moth, and elsewhere.
To discover more content exclusive to our print and digital editions, subscribe here to receive a copy of The London Magazine to your door every two months, while also enjoying full access to our extensive digital archive of essays, literary journalism, fiction and poetry.