by Ted Hughes (from Crow: From The Life And Songs Of The Crow, London : Faber and Faber, 1970)
He tried ignoring the sea
But it was bigger than death, just as it was bigger than life.
He tried talking to the sea
But his brain shuttered and his eyes winced from it as from open flame.
He tried sympathy for the sea
But it shouldered him off -- as a dead thing shoulders you off.
He tried hating the sea
But instantly felt like a scrutty dry rabbit-dropping on the windy cliff.
He tried just being in the same world as the sea
But his lungs were not deep enough
And his cheery blood banged off it
Like a water-drop off a hot stove.
He turned his back and marched away from the sea
As a crucified man cannot move.