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The Lights And The Silos

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Originally published: 28th December 2020

Image by Clker-Free-Vector-Images from Pixabay

This poem was placed 2nd in Brian Strand's "COMPLETELY YOUR CHOICE" (41) Poetry Contest.

1981 and my first visit to The Netherlands by way of an overnight ferry from Hull, UK to Europoort, Rotterdam.


an hour before docking it was ice cold and freezing as the vessel, like scissors cut clean through the swell and the ship’s horn then sounded and woke those still sleeping startling the standing and the seagulls as well and the door opened outwards on a windswept and dark deck as a lighthouse and headland appeared to our right and the radar was turning mixing mist with the morning as we looked over railings still wet from the night and the lifeboats above us were secured by strong davits as we walked round the ship’s deck to see what was there and the noise of the engines grew loud and then quiet as the sea spray and raindrops enveloped the air and the lights and the silos of europoort, holland shone bright in the distance to form a great view and we stood there transfixed with our backs towards england as dawn beckoned others to stand and stare too.

Copyright © | Year Posted 2020




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Date: 1/1/2021 5:31:00 AM
Gary, you are a gifted storyteller, I felt like I was on a wave reading your beautiful poem and I wanted more, well done _Constance
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Gary Radice
Date: 1/1/2021 6:03:00 AM
Thank you Constance. Many of my poems are based upon a series of scenes captured during my lifetime that have stayed with me. Thanks for reading. Cheers - Gary
Date: 1/1/2021 5:07:00 AM
This one had good rhythm, rhyme and flow. I enjoyed reading it this morning. Thanks for your visit to my page. I appreciate you reading and commenting on my work. Sara
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Gary Radice
Date: 1/1/2021 5:21:00 AM
Sara, thank you for visiting and your comments. I found your poem particularly powerful this morning, made more so by the "naive" picture of the swing that accompanied it. Cheers - Gary
Date: 12/31/2020 8:06:00 AM
I love the form of this poem with its telling images and driving rhythms. It is classic in style and a delight to read. Might I suggest (excuse my impudence; I confess that I have improved many of my verses by removing words) that minor editing could make it even better - in particular removing the odd redundant word to comply with the meter. Very well done, Gary.
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Gary Radice
Date: 12/31/2020 8:38:00 AM
Geoffrey thanks so much for the comments and the constructive advice. Cheers - Gary
Date: 12/29/2020 4:13:00 PM
You painted such a magnificent picture with your words, Gary. Wishing you the best year ever in 2021. ~ Elaine
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Gary Radice
Date: 12/30/2020 12:24:00 AM
Thank you for your valued comments Elaine. I admit to being very undecided as to whether the poem should begin with stanzas 3 and 4 followed by 1 and 2 or leave things as they are as it is read here. The very best to you and yours in 2021. Cheers - Gary
Date: 12/28/2020 8:02:00 PM
Gary, Bright as buttons, I can just see the radar in surface search high on mast. Sometimes I miss the endless swells. So many white foamed crests and dread filled troughs in those heavy sea state waves of life. -Richard
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Gary Radice
Date: 12/29/2020 12:17:00 AM
Thank you Richard. I spent some time trying to find the words to describe in more detail the waves but couldnt come up with the words for some reason..your "white foamed crests" and the "dread filled troughs" articulates exactly how I wanted to describe what I saw. It had been a very rough crossing :) Cheers - Gary
Date: 12/28/2020 12:48:00 PM
This one would make a great ballad Gary, Somehow resonates with mull of kintyre, if only you could put music to it, great write and imagery, cheers David
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Gary Radice
Date: 12/28/2020 1:28:00 PM
Thanks for the visit David. Actually..reading it back it does have a folky ballad thang going on...unintentional..but yes..cheers! I need to learn guitar :)