Exhausted from my walk, I chanced
on a bench, but eyeing it before I sat –
decided to slide

well along the narrow planks
to give these nailed words
air: ‘A sailor who loved

Richmond Park’. No date inscribed
no donor named. Who knows who gave
this land-locked sailor leave?

Floating freely now
acroos his deer-strewn acres ... Untroubled,
riding at anchor in the emerald depths

of the rhododendrons. At last,
to circumnavigate the world with ease.
Even now (with the wink kicking up)

he sails as steady as
this bench. To know
you’ve rounded it: Cape Fear

no longer clouding your horizon.

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