A pair of 'water' poems by Mark Leech

Of Water

This distance is all flood. A kiss intended
might drown a metre short. Let drop a stone
upriver where water eases through the bridge,
and no ripple can puzzle through to me
in Hammersmith. But we will swim dreams.
You'll breathe mists all week to cuddle me. I'll
be a fleck of rain, a nightlamp on our window
so you know I haven't felt the tides
withdrawing from uneasy shores. One hand
each side of heaven will cup the sun,
top the current with our thoughts, light the flow
up and down with messages. We swim dreams.
You float an egg on the river. It hatches
in the kiss I launch upstream, home.


Of Water 2

This loving is all rivers. You may overshoot
our landing stage and reach with dripping oars
towards the shore, my stretching hands, or
in a sudden ebb I’ll sit, slack, surprised,
until your forceful push restores
the chopping of waves across my bow.
Who is the water? Who the bank? We both
contain the soft embrace of earth, we both
can flow, or surge, or clap against the rocks.

When you got into this boat with me, we
cut the course we rowed. Since then, we’ve
grown to let the current lead us on, taken
new cargoes from the reeds. Who is the water?
Who the bank? I love this journey to the sea.

• When not being pursued by long-dead poets, Mark thinks about his forthcoming collection – London Water – to be published by Flarestack. www.myspace.com/markleechpoetry

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