At the tide line amongst the jumbled bladder-wrack and shells, the rotting

carcass of a timber boat lies upturned upon the sand. Forsaken by fishermen,

no future now. Cracks where once the oiled decks shone, ribs exposed, iron

rivets rusting, a hole punched in its side. Coarse calls coruscate, greedy gulls

trailing fish guts strut the ramparts of their keep.

The reek of rotting carcasses clots the air. You promised a future, fisher of men.

Wracked upon a timber cross with arms outspread, iron nails through hands and

feet, forsaken, you hang. From beneath exposed ribs, a hole punched in your side

oozes wine-dark blood. Coarse calls oscillate as legionaries patrol the ramparts

of their killing ground.

At the tide line wine-dark blood and bloated, rotting carcasses are long gone.

Amongst the bleached and jumbled ribs of boats and fish and gulls and men,

the bladder-wrack and shells tumble with the future in the sand sucked under by

the surge and swell. No coarse calls echo along the shore, the ramparts are silent,

exposed, inundated.

Forsaken was first published at

Forsaken by Penelope Walker is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at

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