They can try and catch me into stories, but never really know
my name. They never ask me why I must hold so many
messages in bottles, jettisoned wedding rings, shining treasures
and so many old bones. I am rain, sun, and every new beginning.
See the sea, how it works, to loosen, loosen, then suspend.
To salt, salt, then erode, wash, wash then deposit.
Then slump and scree. See the power of fluid that holds,
dissolves density, viscosity, venting the volume of moving water.
Sometimes I might throw you a gift, a hint of glass, polished
to smooth curves, ship washed shards of crockery, weathered,
and warped into another shape. Shining pebbles and shells,
water worried into your palms. Take me home, and listen.
See the tides, how they turn, from pull and push, from land and wind,
tumbling circles, moon and sun, dashing debris to the shoreline,
energy travelling through. Everything passes. Lurch, pitch, swirl.
Everything moves in break, and lunge, spill and surge. Onwards.
At the aperture of the whorl, you might hear my voice,
whispering old stories, and wondering what you are doing.
At the stroke of the stone you might feel my body, dancing
over layers, making, bashing , building, and turning again.
See the ocean, vast and ancient, all rip and flood, constant,
ever changing channel of flux and foam, rise and ebb.
Backrush and breakwater, body and sound, singing always
of the journey and joys of being elsewhere, and returning.
Sometimes, when you wake early,
you know you have ridden miles
through the night country, cloaking
it through, hair still streaming
with waterweeds, and flashing minnows,
moths veiling you, like clouds of song.
Sometimes, you spend days on a single stitch,
a taught red thread, pulled through the soil,
for days it tenses and reaches out,
then settles, making a mark
in the constant tide of your story.
Alison Jones’ work has been widely published in journals such Poetry Ireland Review, Proletarian Poetry and The Interpreter’s House, The Green Parent Magazine and The Guardian. Her pamphlet, Heartwood was published by Indigo Dreams in 2018, her second pamphlet, Omega, came out in June 2020. She has a full collection, forthcoming with Hedgehog Press.