Some small tweaks to the first three verses. I've cut the fourth one out. I think it needs a final verse but not that one.
The sand beneath your sandalled feet still wet from the retreating tide streaked with lines of seaweed had a colour like no other: like Marmite with a greenish-yellow tinge.
Along the sand amongst the racks of weed we'd find the harvest of the sea: washed wood, plastic pieces, corks, feathers - all the flotsam and the jetsam a boy and dad could want, from which we'd fashion rough model boats battleships with gun turrets with barrels made of rusty nails.
The sand beneath bare feet tickled and soothed but stones and shells did not; paddling in the slop and flow of waves was fun but walking back on sharp shingle hurt like the sandpapering of toes as anxious mother towelled legs and feet.
Distracted from creating my Holiday memories by various other commitments including today, of course, being Poetry Day. Although every day is poetry day here.
I spent it at a primary school in Crowle where we worked on memories. By 2pm we had poems ready to present to parents - so a bit of pressure in the writing process! I like the focus this gives - and the children love it - but I wouldn't want this to be the way they generally set about writing. Hopefully the day has added to a good positive view of poetry and they'll be in an upbeat frame of mind next time a poem (or invitation to write one) comes around.
It's amazing what you've got accumulated. Perhaps too much already. But worked upon like this:
The sand beneath your sandalled feet still wet from the retreating tide streaked with lines of seaweed had a colour like no other: Marmite with a greeny-yellow tinge?
Along the sand amongst the racks of weed we'd find the harvest of the sea: washed wood, plastic pieces, corks, feathers - all the flotsam and the jetsam a boy and dad could want, from which back at the caravan or bungalow we'd fashion rough model boats battleships with gun turrets the barrels made of rusty nails.
The sand beneath your bare feet was fun but stones and shells were not; Paddling in slop and flow of waves was great But walking back on sharp shingle hurt As did the sandpapering between the toes As anxious mother towelled legs and feet.
I’d not yet learnt to swim, Kept well within my depth Under mum and dads watchful eyes Loved the lift and swirl of salty waves But hated the moment you had to commit To the cold unwelcoming water It’s lovely once you’re in Yeah – right! We would have said Had we coined that ironic reply.
The sand beneath sandalled feet still wet from the retreating tide streaked with lines of seaweed a colour like no other can you picture Marmite with a greeny-yellow tinge? amongst the racks of weed we'd find the harvest of the sea washed wood, plastic pieces, corks, feathers, all the flotsam and the jetsam a boy could want from which back at the caravan or bungalow we'd fashion model boats not delicate with sails and rigging but rough hewn battleships
That's straight from memory to paper - so needs a lot of work but there are parts that I think sound quite good.
I Haven't given up. Just thinking... In fact, there are too many memories - so some sifting has to go on. Sometimes things work out when you leave them alone and come back to them. Other times, you have to work at it. I think this might be the latter...
I now notice that as my jottings went on, they got longer and less 'poetic'. I wonder if that's common. I would have thought it might be the other way around.
Looking for the hook that will catch my attention - never mind the reader's - I'm thinking about the tansion between positives and negatives, though that may be putting it too strongly. But finding the right kind of sand vs the wrong kind / stones is crucial; good weather / bad weather; the sandy paddling patch / the sharp stony part etc.
I need to see if that kind of balance will work or not.
The sand beneath your feet was fun tempted to write - 'it meant the holiday had begun' but it makes too obvious a rhyme and then I'll be stuck with clunky rhyming couplets.
But drying off between the toes was like rubbing sandpaper - that's the memory! - but it needs working on. Later.
And items, jetsam, floating onto the shoreline returning for breakfast laden with supplies of wood and plastic feathers Each year we would bring more equipment - hammer, nails, saw a proper spade for digging and piling sand
and return home with boats complet with gun turrets, masts, bridge if we'd had the right shaped stuff we'd have made sailing ships
boats were best. Cars, trains - anything with wheels was hard, didn't look right. Aircraft might be easier but required long flat bits for wings. No, a flat piece of wood sharpened at one end plus someupright posts (a 6 inch nail would do) and some blocks of wood or corks soon made a believable oat. as long as you didn't try to make it float...
Reading a short story about someone else's summer and their recollections of holidays prompted memories of my own. It's also something which most people, including children, can recall and if they can recall, can write about.
So, on with the jottings...
sand between toes - bands of stones - between the sea and me - sometimes on my father's feet (had to think about father or dad - dad is more accurate to my experience but father has a nicer rhythm - does truth suffer as a result?) balancing - walking in our fathers' footsteps -
patches of sand and sharp shingle - on the water's edge, the paddling patch - sand suitable for building or too fine, too stony - a good place to sit - away from others - or too cose
the breakwaters, the sea defences - wartime tank traps, blockhouses, pill-boxes - my dad knew their names and purpose.
driftwood, seaweed, shells - but mostly driftwood. Seaweed like Heaney's blackberries, promised much but always disappointed.