Tilbury

(Published in the anthology London Rivers, Paekakariki Press, 2011)

Nowhere, Tilbury, the place,
the town square flimsy like a film set,
not a place of coming from
but arriving at, to go beyond.
Today a girl on horseback
rode in, then trotted out
into a kind of shrubland
with old shire horses, rusty
Cortina, dead plough.
here, where the East End ends
and the flat marshland
sinks to the wide Thames edge,
silver slivers of a ship’s funnels
leave England’s grubby bend
to everywhere.