First Words

Ric Hool 1
Both photographs by Colin Burt – Ric Hool in Cullercoats 2017


First Words

May in Cullercoats
            Sun bleaches the day

A herring gull wheels lit wingtips
as shadows yawn across the beach
ushering picnickers to warm pockets of sand

Something between memory and life
midway of reality and dream
important as blood
bleeds so many years later

It’s all there         Sea-splashed children
running cold towards radiant mothers
ready with cuddling towels
       the disembodied cry of seabirds

Everything possessing a past and a future
for reconstruction in so many ways
for so many reasons             That day
arrives again and again

Ric Hool

A note on this poem by Ric Hool

Holding the ground called Cullercoats is a personal priority. That it is held in thought, poem, song, conversation, pictures, and friendships is illustrative of the residual impact it has had and continues to have on my life.

This is not nostalgia. That would be a limiting and blunt way to explore the elasticity of time; the non-linear complexity of time.

The poem’s title First Words points to an appreciation of the language at hand in a childhood activity: a day at the beach. A language not only arriving in spoken words but also in the ambient sounds of nature and through primary experiences.

Witnessing families on Cullercoats beach a few years ago an anoetic event was later turned in this poem.

Ric Hool was born in Kuala Lumpur, Malaya and raised in Cullercoats, Northumberland, moved to Wales in 1990 after several years in Hastings and five years journeying the islands and mainland of Spain.

Poetic themes are the psychological and geographical impact of place and space on the human experience. Water is a theme, poured from place to place and from experience to experience: an agent of informing.

Whilst resident in Wales has established writing credentials by way of ten published collections of poetry; as a reviewer of poetry in magazines; a creative writing tutor for various literature projects.

Has organized he poetry reading series, Upstairs at the Hen & Chicks, for 24 years.


Between So Many Words (Red Squirrel Press 2016)

Hut (Wooden Head Press 2016)

A Way of Falling Upwards (Cinnamon Press 2014)

Selected Poems (Red Squirrel Press 2013)

No Nothing (The Collective Press, 2009)

Voice from a Correspondent (Collective Press, 2001)

The Bridge (Collective Press, 2000)

Making It (Collective Press, 1998)

Tilt (Collective Press 1996)

Fitting in with Malcolm (WYSIWYG Chapbooks, 1994)
Links to books and reviews





Add yours →

  1. Beautiful poem. I particularly relish the two lines: ‘as shadows yawn across the beach’ and ‘running cold towards radiant mothers’. In the latter, it’s that one word, ‘cold’ that holds all the meaning for me, these little ones run to their mothers in need of warmth, that is more than temperature. Love that. The last lines are really poignant, that the day, like the waves are ever present, ever leaving. Lovely

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s appropriate and pleasing to have First Words in Holding Ground i.e. that area of seabed where an anchor will hold; a place of safety. A place from which to journey out; a place to return.
      As you say Clare, ‘that the day, like the waves are ever present, ever leaving’.
      Thank you

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: