“Lament,” by Brenda Chamberlain, from The New British Poets


My man is a bone ringed with weed.
Thus it was on my bridal night,
That the sea, risen to a green wall
At our window, quenching love’s new delight,
Stood curved between me and the midnight call
Of him who said I was so fair
He could drown for joy in the salt of my hair.
We sail, he said,
Like the placid dead
That have long forgotten the marriage bed.
On my bridal night
Brine stung the window.
Alas, in every night since then
These eyes have rained
For him who made my heart sing
At the lifting of the latch,
For him that will not come again
Weary from the sea.
The wave tore his bright flesh in her greed:
My man is a bone ringed with weed.

from The New British Poets, edited by Kenneth Rexroth
New York: New Directions, 1949

Available on the Internet Archive Link.

This is one of a series of neglected poems taken from the Internet Archive.

Leave a Comment