I walk on turtles through the night



I walk on turtles through the night,

Through pea-green waters, faded light.

They raise their weary heads and glint

Or chuckle, rumbling turtle thinks

And gingerly I balance on

My barefoot feet

Grown tough through ages long,

And twisty turtle routes and roads

And flying fish and croaking toads.

Til salty, I begin to pickle,

The turtle tongues are slick and tickle

Leather feet and gnarly toes

And ballet-balance aching bones.

“You’ve been this way before”

They mutter

“Here she is, the same old nutter,”

Then shouty-crazed like aged drunks

They argue long about my feet

And whether really we did meet


Debate my now diminished bulk,

With some victorious, others sulk

And swear that someone other trudged

Their road of

Flying fish and croaking toads.

I pause one turtle to each foot,

Look back along the route I took,

The moment’s indecision dies

I carry on against the tides.

Behind me turtles croon and sing

some David Bowie, then some Sting.