Salcombe’s Estuary Orchestra

Seabirds dance to Neptune's beat, and
Like moths around a flame
Welcome back the fishing fleet
Back safe from the catching game

In and out, to and fro
Rise and fall, high and low
Flood tide, ebb tide, spring tide and neap tide
Riverside, seaside, creek side and boat side
All dance to the warters' refrain
And while cormorants line up to conduct
The estuary orchestra plays again

Ferries crossing, visitors jostling
Lights blinking, prawns winking
Sails bracing, dinghies racing
Bobcats leaping, seadogs sleeping
Boatmen waving, lifeboat saving

Finally, the conductors dry
Immodestly on a prow
And, as the sun turns off the rain
The estuary orchestra takes a bow
Before playing a tidal encore
Over and over again


Michael Ashby

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