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Tuesday Poem: Judi Sutherland - The Ship Owner's House

I live in a galleon on an inland sea
cresting the swell of the topmost river-terrace.
Sometimes I sit at this sterncastle window
watching the rain-shrouded Pennines ebb

and flow, heaving with the Helm Wind's bluster,
the low clouds massing over Great Shunner Fell
travelling toward me in flocks of weather;
and the small birds rising against the gale.

This is foreign England; the storm front edge
of nowhere; a fierce, untethered town
riding the wide moors, where Atlantic storms
squall in, ransacking the heather.

The high rooms of this house are filled like sails.
Its element is air. It's all heave and yaw;
the compass of our greenfield voyage spins,
our blank charts all terra incognita.

© Judi Sutherland
From The Ship Owner’s House, published by Vane Women Press




I was very taken by the cover of this small collection - the derelict house stranded on a spit of rock surrounded by sea - a cover that echoes the themes of the poetry set out in the blurb: “The Ship Owner’s House is bu…

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