Polperro

Spindrift line of silver grey
Tide on the turn
Red stain of paint
Across the harbour ground
Hemp ropes are straining
Against
Hulls wedged in sand
The freshening wind
Throws fresh spots of rain
Drawn lines of grey
From the cloud’s edge

Behind the harbour wall
A narrowing beach
The water rushes in
The dark mouth of the cave
Hides a smuggler’s tale
Sea worn
Smooth steps
No tread
White walls and narrow lanes
Cling to the edge
Juxtaposed at odd angles
Misshapen doors and windows
Signify age and subsidence
Strange names etched of
Spanish vowels and Cornish girls
Do tell of strange liaisons
Stranger trades of contraband
And tax laws
Evasion and subterfuge
Do tunnels lead dreckly to the shore
As Poldark would have us to believe?
Dark tales in this traditional scene
So easily conjured there.

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