William Bedford

Tennyson at Mablethorpe


This is where he walked,
bare-legged on tussocked dunes
or paddling in the sea,
the tug of wind against his face
smoothing frazzled nerves,
furrowed frown. Hallam knew.
Walked the same dunes,
dark wraith in poet’s mind,
cold as German Seas.


I walk here too,
white sands at low tide
runnelled by the moon’s turn,
the lugworm’s dance.
All memory frowns,
peopling barren dunes,
setting foreshores mourning
and seagulls churning waves,
for me, for you.

WILLIAM BEDFORD received an Arts Council Major Bursary for Poetry in 1978,  Yorkshire Arts Award in 2000 for the publication of The Redlit Boys and a Royal Literary Fund Award in 2007.  Collecting Bottle Tops: Selected Poetry 1960-2008 was published in 2009.He was on the Editorial Board of Poetry Salzburg Review from 2007 to 2016, and was Royal Literary Fund Fellow at Oxford Brookes University. He was awarded first prize in the London Magazine International Poetry Competition in 2014.