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When I was young

The North Sea, brown, and flecked with white
That threw itself in angry spite
Against those solid stony walls
That kept the harbour safe from squalls....
Those gentle waves of blue and green
That rippled by me, so serene....
The memories flood back to me;
When I was young beside the sea.

The days when seas were blue and calm;
The beach where kids played, safe from harm.
Sandcastles there, all decked with shells
That did all kinds of stories tell.
The tangy smell of salty air,
The thoughts of which can take me there....
As though, 'twas only yesterday....
I left that place, and went away.

The gannets there, so sleek and free
That plummet deep into the sea,
The kittiwakes that mew and call
From nests on towering cliff-side walls.
The herring gulls, I still can hear,
Their mournful calls, so loud and clear;
I never shall forget their sound....
Their calls do still my memory hound.

The song of blackbird, thrush, and dove,
All melodies I used to love.
The hoot of owl and cuckoo's call
That still do now my ears enthrall.
The only difference, now to me,
I'm far away, across  the sea.
But now, my heart, it starts to crack....
At memories that take me back.

It's now been nearly fifty years
Since first I left, and shed a tear;
Bu. never does a day go past
When I don't think of soft green grass;
Of fat brown trout in limpid pools
And then, I think, was I a fool
To leave the place where lies my heart
To go, and make another start?

Copyright © Paul Bownas

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