Poem introduction

Burnham-Overy-Staithe is a little coastal village in North Norfolk - my grandparents lived there and I returned to live in another of the Burnhams.

Dusk, Burnham-Overy-Staithe

Dusk, Burnham-Overy-Staithe

The blue hour ends, this world
floats on a great stillness.

I only guess where marsh
finishes and sky begins,

each grows out of the other.
In the creek a slip

of water gleams. Rowboats
bob and swing above the mud,

the barnacled and broken
ribs of Old Stoker's boat.

A wedge of gulls rustles
overhead, and for a moment

the water notices them.
Such calm is some prelude.

Then across the marsh it comes,
the sound as of an endless

train in a distant cutting,
the god working his way back,

butting and shunting,
reclaiming his territory.

This world's his soundbox now;
in the stillness he still moves.

Anything could happen.


from Selected Poems (Enitharmon Press, 2001), copyright © Kevin Crossley-Holland 2001, used by permission of the author and the publisher.

Recordings

Kevin Crossley-Holland

Kevin Crossley-Holland Downloads

1The Rain-Giver

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2Dusk, Burnham-Overy-Staithe

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3The Island

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4The First Island

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5The Dream-House

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6Grandmother's Footsteps

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7An Approach to the Marsh

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8Mosquito

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9from Waterslain

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10Orkney Girls - an extract: The Girl at Gurness

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11Sounds

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12Do You, or I, or Anyone Know?

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13Here, at the Tide's Turning

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14Solvitur Ambulando

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15Across the Water

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16The Language of Yes

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17Still Life: Eleanor with Field-Flowers

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18Leaf-Girl

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19White Noise

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20Light Weather

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21Counting Her Steps

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22The Fox and the Poet

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23Translation Workshop: Grit and Blood

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24Idling

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25The Heart-in-Waiting

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27Limoges

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28The Grain of Things

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29The Art of Picking Blackberries

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26Like a Small Sigh

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Books by Kevin Crossley Holland