The poetry of the BBC Shipping forecast, broadcast late each night, has filled my adult life from my university days using telescopes, via night feeding babies to now, when I often can’t sleep until well past midnight.
A typical forecast for several sea areas might be;
“Dogger, Fisher, German Bight. Southeast veering southwest 4 or 5, occasionally 6 later. Thundery showers. Moderate or good, occasionally poor.”
What this is telling us is that the sea areas Dogger, Fisher and German Bight are forecast to experience a SW wind direction blowing Force 4 or 5, sometimes F6 later. ‘Later’ is specifically at at time over 12 hours from the time the forecast was issued.
For those of you wondering what the first line of this poem refers to, here is a map of the sea areas covered by the forecast……
Sharing this poem in the Open link Night over at Dverse!
Precipitation within sight Rain, drizzle, mizzle Soft weather, mucky weather ‘The Smoky Smirr o Rain’ Liquid sunshine Slow words, gentle But it was spitting this morning Pitter patter, splash, splish, splodge, squelch And it bucketed down last night A torrent, raining cats and dogs Not a light soaking rain Squalling, hailing and sleeting Flooding, flowing, swamping A deluge chucking it down
Smoky tendrils reach out to sunlit waters As Baltic sea mist creeps to Helsinki Coming to market for Cloud berries perhaps Ferries leave Market Square and slowly disappear Once at our island destination (A cold journey with no sights to see) The jetty is disembodied Fragmentary in fog Walking reveals low rocky terrain Suddenly a sunlit beach From where we watch A second larger island slowly appear On a journey out of the haze
On the graveyard shift, we chase weather parse our charts, work the numbers issue warnings, brief pilots wait for our relief to turn up and then that blessed walk outside into whatever we had been predicting
It has rained again And the soil exudes a scent As a child, when the air was redolent with coffee Then we knew it would rain Away from the factories I have found that oncoming rain smells of earth Pre-petrichor perhaps
Refreshingly grey day Cars softly swish past Light staccato rain Washing the world clean Bejewelling my windows Where muted light Shines in stopped droplets Gently loosing blossoms And wiping them away Rinsing down new leaves Dripping from bent over grasses Soaking the seed bed Sparking spring growth