Cormorant Sickness

Corvus Marinus, Sea Raven,
Cormorant, Raven of the Sea,

I enjoyed watching you
slipping beneath the surface
seemingly effortlessly returning
flashing smiling shining
with a sliver of fish.

When I was told how you ate pebbles
to weigh you down to the deep,
fishermen’s collars to stop you
swallowing, I choked
and got sick.

With a belly full of pebbles
I could not float or sink,
keep anything down,
bring it up either,
could not speak nor breathe

until you swam to find me,
offered a sleek black wing,
we slipped our collars,
disgorged our stones
at the edge of your secret beach.

Each time I see you I smile
as if I had plumbed the deep
surfaced with a shimmering
catch of slippery silver fish.
Dark-winged, magnificent,

your sickness set me free:

Corvus Marinus, Sea Raven,
Cormorant, Raven of the Sea.

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One thought on “Cormorant Sickness

  1. I do love cormorants – they come up the Severn and onto the canal so I used to see them regularly from the boat. Incredibly distinctive in flight, and definite echoes of dinosaur. this is a lovely, haunting, unsettling piece.

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