A stretch of water on the River Orwell

Rancid oil-slick reeks
of dead fish and
salty algal bloom and the air,
pacing over lapping, wafts
pig shit and
cut grass.

Blurred gelatinous forms,
โ€œa sign of warming or dying watersโ€ come up
like rheumy glasses from a dirty sink and
snagged on rock,
shrivel to nothing more
than a brittle sheen.

And yet:
wide open breezing
green and petroleum blue
glittering surfaces located in the public imagination
at the Tate (Britain)
as something nearing
Constable.

But still, further back:
fear death byโ€ฆ until I learned not to,
hands so cold
they were no use,
and the first time
my heartย broke.

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