My ancient mother bids, sweetly,
and I go, barefoot across the shingle,
to the old kingdom beneath the sea.

Primordial ancestors breathe
inside my bones. They sing, as I sink
my head below the waves,
about the time before.

When did our gills close over,
and we shed our fins for fingernails?
Salt on my skin, I am with my forefathers,
though they do not recognise me.

Ocean, take me home on the currents,
or cast me far away, into the blue depths
of the map, where no one has ever been.

Here I am no more myself
than an alien come home.
I have too many foreign smells,
and cities on my tongue.

The gulls are crying, crying, crying,
but only to the wind. It flicks
across the surface
of a world unseen.


© Deanna Scutt, 2017