beach walking (alone) in winter – Poem by Stephen House

It’s the Little Things

Starting us on our journey of focusing on the little things, we have Stephen House’s savory poetry! Feel the healing power of the beach through his words.

beach walking (alone) in winter

layer up to start
peel off clothes as needed
don’t stress about carting unworn attire
stash garments under a bush
drag behind or tie around
wave in the air celebrating weather
free up from reality as needed

don’t permit dark clouds to press down
replace their weight with joy
float beneath beauty extreme
marvel at dense complexity
remember times you wanted them gone
and realize they disappeared in their own time

rain will pass
you know showers are temporary
don’t give into the notion of forever wet
drenching is experience
glimmers of sun appear
dry and warm will follow
if soaked keep walking
your resilience is incredible
accept all beyond control
relish how climate just is
how you just are

remove shoes
dance on wet sand
paddle in icy shallows
see feet turn blue in lapping seas
the elements and you are one
truth inside is the guide
as feet become numb with cold so will you
to what doesn’t matter
and there is so much insignificant
so appreciate and be

sing with the wind
the sea-weed and sand blowing
is part of a wilderness choir
stretch up and out to the unseen source
call loud the sounds held inside
your essence is more ancient than time
remember you transcend doctrines and rules
worship the unknown as you sense not as they have told
turn into the instinct of existence
freedom is the conductor of creativity
relish the gift of liberty from an unexpected icy squall

and as you take rest from beach walking (alone) in winter
rejuvenated and reborn
know that before long
you may be beach walking (alone) in spring
another season
with changes
new moods and views
brilliant colours and light
no greater or less than
as powerful and real
as the season of now and those before


Stephen House is an award winning Australian playwright, poet and actor. He’s won two Awgie Awards (Australian Writer’s Guild) , Adelaide Fringe Award, Rhonda Jancovich Poetry Award for Social Justice, Goolwa Poetry Cup, Feast Short Story Prize and more. He’s been shortlisted for Lane Cove Literary Award, Overland’s Fair Australia Fiction Prize, Patrick White Playwright and Queensland Premier Drama Awards, Greenroom best actor Award and more. He’s received Australia Council literature residencies to Ireland and Canada, and an India Asialink.  His chapbook “real and unreal” was published by ICOE Press. He is published often and performs his work widely.

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