The Cold Tap Sings

the p-word

Tag: Sea

From the Desert to the Deep Blue Sea


Driving from Las Vegas to Seattle via Grand Canyon and Yellowstone

5 mountain passes
4 national forests
3 Indian reservations
1 continental divide
4 national parks
3 campsites
3 waterfalls
2 volcanoes
12 lakes
10 gas stations
3 roundabouts
4 diners
3 motels
3 yellow Volkswagen Beetles
2 bald eagles
1 western tanager
0 condors
6 burgers
1 circumhorizontal arc
38 coffees
4 dust devils
5 buffalo herds
2 cowboys
5 hikes
1 float
2 cars


2,772 miles
2.5 weeks
2 companions

Sunday 17th June – Tuesday 3rd July 2018


39,009 ft


39,009 ft

Fasten seat belt while seated
Life vest under your seat

  a   ten se                   sea
               under you

                    be   w i   se
Li    ve


Trumpet Solo

Last night I had a dream
That you had a dream
That I ran out of words

I went down to the beach
Put a trumpet to my lips
And played to the waves

My song was a solo
An improvised solo
An unaccompanied improvised solo

It told them I had a dream
That you had a dream
That I ran out of words

And the waves went on breaking
While a sleek yacht
Sliced through their crests

Towards a different horizon


photo: Robin Boothroyd

photo: Robin Boothroyd

I’ve spent the past few days gathering my thoughts about my recent trip to Iceland. I’ll be posting poems and journal entries on The Cold Tap Sings over the coming weeks, so stay tuned.

Let’s start with a poem about the sea meeting the cliffs near Vík í Mýrdal on Iceland’s south coast. The form mimics the effect of waves breaking.


The Cliffs Near Vík í Mýrdal 

the waves
the waves sculpt
the waves sculpt basalt
the waves sculpt basalt columns
the waves sculpt basalt
the waves sculpt
the waves
the tides
the tides push
the tides push & pull
the tides pull
the tides
the sea
the shore
the sea
the sea shore
the sea shore sings
the sea shore sings eternally
in the cathedral of the sky


More on Iceland here. Check out ‘Fathom’, my suite about the sea, here.


Having climbed to the crest of the wave of ‘Fathom‘ with Segments, we’re now on the descent to the trough.

More recordings from Fathom are on my SoundCloud page here.