Salt-washed and swept
By huge winter westerlies,
The two islands sit
On the southern horizon.
They were a limit of the world
When I was a child.
Out of reach, almost out of sight,
To a boy standing on a December pier.
Open, uninhabited, they were all potential,
All light and movement.
Until another thought surfaces,
In the deepening afternoon light.
I wonder did they – unreachable – cross the mind of my great-grandfather,
As he drowned six miles west of here, in a blind fog, a century ago?