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How Many Hymn Books Have I Looked at?

Oceans stand pale and placid -

rivers race to the sea.

We once sung about the water of life

in cold school hall assemblies.

But as I meander down this flow,

I wonder what happens when we go?

The inevitability of life’s current,

flying high and surrendering low.

I wade in the water,

Slowly seeping into my clothes

and suddenly it’s shoulder high.

I have no memory of how the vicar

dipped water on my baby-smooth skin,

Offering up my life to my next of kin.

Stood shoulder to shoulder,

with my brothers much older.

We’d shiver during midnight mass,

desperate for a nice hot cuppa

or, even better, a bath.

And now I wonder how

he with a capital H

can be ruler of the seas

and all of our sakes.

As ships sink and planes disappear,

Was it always his plan for us to see the sea with such fear?

Born in 1997 and living and working in Norwich, Norfolk, Tessa is a Fine Art graduate that explores the use of word and poetry within her practice; often relating to the outdoors and natural world around her. This is her first publication.

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