Some ekphrasis from Sarah Salway

(after Palm Sunday, Anselm Keifer)

Deep in the root ball of the ship
the plant collector is making a nest.

He counts his catch, tucks each seed
in its own hand-labeled box, ebony

cabinet ticking with paused hearts.
He dreams one day of growing

a fresh desert, of dried moments
in the old land coming back to life.

And as he waters the dust, sailors
sleep and no-one sees the woodern

mast dancing in tune to the wind’s
song until, reaching for water, it leans

too far, loses balance. White sails,
like baby gowns, christen the sea.

*Sarah Salway is a novelist, blogger and journalist, and currently works as the RLF Fellow at the London School of Economics. Find out more here:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *