In memory of Daphne du Maurier
Is there no-one there,
not a single shivering soul
in the darkness?
Nothing beyond, between, behind
but wraiths of mist,
time so ancient you could lose
your mind in it
silence so deep you could be buried
alive in it,
fog so thick you could be wound
like a mummy inside its turns and twists?
If there’s a wrecker huddled behind a hawthorn
or crouching in a ditch
please god may he be haunted
by the ghosts of drowning sailors
lured to their deaths.
May he see them writhing in torment
as the waves batter the jagged rocks;
may he hear their voices above the wind;
may he be frozen by their pitiful eyes
as the sea carries them under, under,
and may he never forget.
You are miles from the sea here,
and there is no beast of Bodmin Moor --
I swear there is no beast.
If you hear something, anything,
it isn't the tide coming in
or the howling wind
or the pelting rain.
Nothing, nothing is here
but the moor
and its haunting name
and a mist that tells its own story
in turns and twists.
Get out now. Get away. Be rid of this.