River boats float along,
up and down
from side to side,
Putney to

all this
stems from the Thames
the arterial tree

for the sailor in me the Thames will do
on a flat bottomed barge
muddling through to
St Katherine’s and Tobacco dock, to
Tower bridge and make a stop

Ferries and Wherries and
days on the Thames

making friends
with the mudlarks, the spivs
the preachers, the sharks
all parts of the stem
a branch of the tree

life is for me from
the Thames to the sea.

© 2016, John Smallshaw.