IMMEDIATES? Let us take for text
The bite of salt through sodden wool,
And place a running headrope next
Ink by the pen or bucketful.
Two cents for haddock, one for cod;
Weather a chance, and wind a guess
But no allegiance to the god
Of unavailing bitterness.
Here on the roofless beach they know
The fallibility of plan,
That justice and injustice grow
Not from system but the man.
An ageless land sea conspire
To smooth the imperfect mould of birth;
While freezing spray and drying fire
Translate the inexplicit earth.
" Get understanding first of these:
The open cut, the healing scar;
Before you flick prophetic keys
To tell us what immediates are."
*In 1936 Leo Kennedy wrote in New Frontier. "Bruce of Halifax writes convincinglyof sea and ships, but his poetry carries the persona, insular emotion of one still unaware of immediates." Kennedy later said, after reading Bruce's poetic responses, that a typographical error had resulted in "immediates" replacing "political immediacies."
© Harry Bruce, All Rights Reserved