Amelia Josephine Burr

(1878-1968 / United States)

A Lynmouth Widow


He was straight and strong, and his eyes were blue
As the summer meeting of sky and sea,
And the ruddy cliffs had a colder hue
Than flushed his cheek when he married me.

We passed the porch where the swallows breed,
We left the little brown church behind,
And I leaned on his arm, though I had no need,
Only to feel him so strong and kind.

One thing I never can quite forget;
It grips my throat when I try to pray --
The keen salt smell of a drying net
That hung on the churchyard wall that day.

He would have taken a long, long grave --
A long, long grave, for he stood so tall . . .
Oh, God, the crash of a breaking wave,
And the smell of the nets on the churchyard wall!

Submitted: Saturday, January 04, 2003

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