Saturday, 28 July 2018

At the seaside

My mother had no faith in the sea
But stayed her distance on the golden sand
Except when it retreated at low tide
Then dare to paddle Dad close at hand

She even felt sick on a rowing boat
That crossed to Arun river's western shore
To Littlehampton's deserted beach
Did grip the side, and cry out 'No more!"

While we boys chased around the sand dunes
Explored the old fort or splashed in the sea
Mother fretted that sunny afternoon
Dreamt of safety where she wanted to be

Despite the sun her face was quite pale
As we trekked back to ferry's river berth
She closed her eyes for the journey's row back
Sighed with relief stepping on the real earth

Image found at


  1. A poignant memory poem, Robin, which paints a touching picture of your mother and of your childhood seaside trips. It's so comforting to read poems about places I know; Littlehampton is another seaside town we'd visit when I was young.

  2. This is beautiful - a loving memory of the beach holiday with an interesting purview of your mother's stance towards the sea. These memories pave the way for stories that we cherish and recount so fondly.

  3. I was like your mom. While i love the ocean from shore, i am a queasy sailor the few times i venture onto it by boat!

  4. This reminds me of my mother💞 even today she tends to avoid going anywhere near the sea but enjoys her time watching us splash around instead. 😊

  5. Although I know I visited Littlehampton as a child Robin, I have no recollection of it.
    Your words brought Littehampton alive and I cam picture your mother's fight with her fears as you boys had great fun in the sand dunes and in your explorations.
    Thank you for sharing as I really enjoyed reading.
    Anna :o]

  6. This is so special and so different from my mom who often would be on the oars (or the outboard motor)...

  7. Oh, I feel sorry for people who can't enjoy the beach and the water – especially those who get seasick – and count my blessings not to be among them.

  8. I must admit, you may as well been writing about me! I watched with an anxious eye as my four children swam and frolicked in ocean waters. Still not a strong swimmer, I stick to pools that have a beginning and and end.