Before – A Fibonarch

This is one of several made-up forms I and other poets devised in a workshop. This is N’s form and my poem having a go at using it.

Fibonarch: The poem rises and falls to a Fibonnaci sequence of words (mathematical sequence in which each successive number is the sum of the two preceding numbers). Content must have something to do with number.

The poem is in response to a painting in the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, before John Harrison cracked the problem of calculating longitude using a chronometer rather than the stars.


Ships then?
Cutters, schooners, barks,
went astray, in a storm
collided with rocks despite faith placed in stars.
Too many.This one is lost in sea-spray and my camera flash.
Maybe she’s foundered somewhere behind this tall stack.
Can you imagine this, belief, so regularly smashed?
Widows and children weeping; innumerable
black shuttered windows.
Church bells.


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