While colours seem a different shade
in Henrietta Street now it is noon,
as always you can hear the sea.
You’re here and not a day too soon.

Here, buy a book in Grape Lane where
the shop is piled with old and new.
The colours seem a different shade.
The swing bridge gives a golden view.

In Henrietta Street now it is noon.
A ship is entering the port,
as always you can hear the sea.
You wave to those who are on board.

The Swing Bridge gives a golden view
and gulls are sitting on a car.
This is ‘away’ for you although
you feel at home, and not that far.

Belonging is a word you find.
You’re here and not a day too soon
to find that all is still in place
in Henrietta Street now it is noon.

Yes, coming back was needed much.
Belonging is a word you find,
but soon it will be time to go
and leave this mystic place behind.

Comments on: "In Henrietta Street now it is noon" (23)

  1. I come away from this smiling.

    Clearly Whitby made a big impression on you. I suspect you will be back!! 🙂


    • Hi David, nice to know you got a smile out of it 🙂 Whitby was a very nice, but much too short holiday, we wanted to see more! Maybe it will take 5 years again, but I do think we will be back 🙂 Eventhough he can’t speak English, my husband enjoyed it very much too 🙂

      Arohanui 🙂

  2. Ina,

    This is a fabulous poem!

    I could feel how much you enjoyed your trip. Whitby has some lovely fusty, musty bookshops!! 🙂

    Love and hugs xx

    • Hi Christine, I am glad you like it 🙂 I think it is a very good spot there 🙂

      At first I didn’t notice that the first letters of the 2nd, 3rd and 4rth stanza spelt “hit” , but when I did, I decided to make the word “Whitby” lol.

      In that bookshop in Grape Lane I bought a dictionary (Modern English Usage by H W Fowler) an Oxford edition for the Bridlington High School for girls and although it was printed in 1944, it still is not yellow, so good paper lol.

      I love dictionaries, they often give me a word that I can knitt on with and make a poem, and this one turns out to be a great help to my English!

      It was a second hand book, with a name in it, as it was given as a prize to a certain Jill R. for secretarial work. I wonder what became of her 🙂

      Love and hugs xxx

      • Fowlers is a dictionary which all good homes should have!!! 🙂

        I have a slightly more modern edition 🙂


        • The nice part is how they take the time to describe stuff. And all sorts of poetry!


  3. Of course, Whitby! I’ve only been there once but this is very good and evocative Ina.

    • Hi David,
      thank you very much. I have been there twice now 🙂 We also visited Scarborough. I think the Eastern shore of England must have many nice towns like this?

      • Hi Ina – yes, and as you are I’m sure aware, it’s very varied, too. Personally, I like the Norfolk coast best but I also love the Yorkshire and Northumberland coasts. The latter is really wild and atmospheric.

  4. Is Whitby the place with an old Abbey, also the place where Captain Cook sailed for Australia. Does it still have the last kipper factory where they are still genuinely smoked? Lovely poem, evocative of my stay in that area some many years ago.

  5. Hi Gerard, I think you must be Dutch too 🙂

    Yes, Whitby is that place, I was in the house were Cook got his education btw. (I always thought Abel Tasman was the one who discovered Australia? )

    We could smell the smoke from that kipper factory up on the cliff where the abbey is. It smelt like home lol. 🙂 I think nothing there ever changes much! 🙂

    • Yes, I am Dutch and was in Whitby many years ago. You are right, it was Abel Tasman who discovered Australia first, but Captain Cook was the man who claimed it for England. I think the Dutch had their hands full in Indonesia and perhaps also thought Australia looked a bit too barren and hostile!.
      As for kippers, I still prefer the raw herring (met uitjes).

      I remember also when visiting Holland some years back and, sadly, had gone without herrings for many years in Australia, I bought 5 of them in Nijverdal. I immediately ate three of them outside the shop. The man of the herring-shop came outside and asked if I was alright. I told him of my plight not having eaten herrings for so many years. He was full of sympathy and gave me another 5!

  6. Such a clever take on the acrostic form, Ina – it really holds together beautifully. I haven’t visited Whitby for many years, but now I feel as though I’ve just been back! N.xx

    • 🙂 That is the word, arcostic. I forgot lol.

      Whitby has this repeating post-time effect on me, it is as if past and present mingle there. That is why I let the lines repeat. 🙂

  7. I LOVE this, Ina! For its form and scene setting and sharing the character of this old sea town. Traveling the Yorkshire and Northumberland coasts were some of my favorite journeys, even though they were well over 25 years ago. You took me back, and let me smell and taste and fall in love with Whitby and its world all over again!

  8. I forgot to say that the title and its repetition throughout the poem proved very effective!

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