Kevin Crossley-Holland

Image by John Hedgecoe

Dusk, Burnham-Overy-Staithe

Kevin Crossley-Holland

Dusk, Burnham-Overy-Staithe

Kevin Crossley-Holland

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.


Kevin Crossley-Holland

Kevin Crossley-Holland Reading from his poems

1The Rain-Giver

2Dusk, Burnham-Overy-Staithe

3The Island

4The First Island

5The Dream-House

6Grandmother's Footsteps

7An Approach to the Marsh


9from Waterslain

10Orkney Girls - an extract: The Girl at Gurness


12Do You, or I, or Anyone Know?

13Here, at the Tide's Turning

14Solvitur Ambulando

15Across the Water

16The Language of Yes

17Still Life: Eleanor with Field-Flowers


19White Noise

20Light Weather

21Counting Her Steps

22The Fox and the Poet

23Translation Workshop: Grit and Blood


25The Heart-in-Waiting

26Like a Small Sigh


28The Grain of Things

29The Art of Picking Blackberries

Books by Kevin Crossley-Holland