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I happened upon a stretch of quiet beach.
The mantis green palms flayed lightly in an uncertain breeze.
The course abrasive sand now cooling in the early evening
under a purple sky broodingly framing a round tangelo sun,
slowly setting over the striated etched horizon
and the South China Sea.
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I sat upon a clutch of rocks worn to a smooth hollow
by centuries of the gorging tide coming and going.
Behind me a small array of attap houses on stilts stood still
from which a Malay family took to the water
laughing and splashing in the foaming surf,
swiping from the air and feasting on the live, leaping,
sweet translucent prawns.
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They seemed careless, carefree and simply happy
in worn cotton shorts and torn tee shirts flapping like flags.
As the wind turned eastward
they stepped out of the waist high waves to acknowledge me
with a smile and greeting words
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I normally just say London …. it’s easier somehow.
But this evening thoughts turned to what home is
and where home is or was.
“Manchester” I say causing arms to splay and display
and in turn a broken English reply … “aah Bobby Charlton”