NAZE FEVER | | The Online Writing Community


A Poem by Norman223

Walton -on- the Naze on the Essex Coast is a local rapidly eroding area that is rich in fossils.


With apologies to  John Masefield's  "Sea Fever" and my fellow amateur palaeontologists.



I must go down to the Naze again, where the fossils sleep in the clay

And all I need is a good low tide so I can spend the day

 With a small pick and a specimen jar and a plastic bag , or two,

 And sifting piles of Eocene silt, till a shark's tooth comes in view.


I must go down to the Naze again to add to my mini collection,

 Before it's inaccessible through environment protection.

 And all I ask is a listening ear and a scientific eye.

 And let nature take it's natural course, as it did in days gone by.


For, when we go down to the Naze again, its contours may be changed.

By storms, as it's been for millions of years, but as it's re-arranged

New evidence is then revealed for promoting speculation,

 By reasoned scientific fact, or academic affectation.

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© 2017 Norman223

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Really good to read! Did you know that the east coast of England is sinking under the Scandinavian plate (or whatever it is called). But your poem would seem to imply that the bottom is coming up ... with all the fossils you are finding?

Posted 1 Year Ago


1 Year Ago

Yes, I think our part of Essex will have to be renamed as Clacton-under-Sea in years to come. But .. read more
Great Aunt Astri

1 Year Ago

Tee Hee! It is amazing what we can conjure up when mature, wise, experienced, 'honed' etc etc by liv.. read more
WOW! WOW! And WOW! I love this! This is one of your best that I've read so far! I love the way your mind works. This is the poster child for showing other writers the need for a lifelong searching curiosity, as a requirement for good writing. Sometimes I'm so tired of reading about love & heartbreak which is expressed in very similar terms, from poem to poem. It's such a breath of fresh air (sea air, I might add) to read you & delve into your lovely crumbling bluff filled with fossils *wink! wink!* No offense at calling you an old fossil! Excellent rhyme & rhythm on this one, as well as the wonderful exploration experience we got to take with you!

Posted 1 Year Ago


1 Year Ago

Thanks Margie. This crumbling old fossil (Scribus myopicii) appreciates the value of your comm.. read more
You always think there's nothing new to find. Yet there doesn't seem to be a day that passes without something turning up. Always like it when some new dinosaur turns up.

Posted 1 Year Ago

Very enjoyable and well written. The balance between environmental protection and freedom of access is always tricky. I particularly enjoyed the barbed last line!

Posted 1 Year Ago

No apologies needed Norman. I really enjoyed the flow and rhythm of the poem; and the last verse is a wonderfully gentle reminder that evolution and change is measured over millions of years, rather than just our brief span.


Posted 1 Year Ago

I'm sure Masefield would forgive you using a touch of meter and hint of style for your very fine and interesting poem! Not only have you adapted to suit, you've included something that a Dorset girl thoroughly enjoys when possible - fossil collecting. Have a super collection of this and that found not only in our fossil rife county but elsewhere.. coral from Scotland, for instance!

How right you are in that one perfectarea too.. hats off for it, " .. For, when we go down to the Naze again, its contours may be changed. By storms, as it's been for millions of years, but as it's re-arranged '

Happy hunting - from a more than happy reader!

Posted 1 Year Ago


1 Year Ago

I love Dorset with its wonderful walks .My wife and I spent many happy hours digging around the be.. read more

1 Year Ago

Might have seen you both - who knows otherwise!!!
Oh my! This excursion into your "Naze Fever" was so great for me. I have never had the experience of looking for fossils but am intrigued by the subject. Reading your poem was really gratifying as my being was allowed a little step into your own life experience. Thanks for the trip! Bless your wonderful sharing and life...........................Kathy

Posted 1 Year Ago


1 Year Ago

Thank you Kathy. Sometimes just a mark on a stone in the garden, when looked at through a lens can.. read more
Kathy Van Kurin

1 Year Ago

I am so jealous, well in a good way. It is wonderful to see people finding a pass.. read more
A wonderful, descriptive poem. I wanted to be there with you, looking for those magnificent fossils. So much of my youth was spent exploring the outdoors. Often, I'd follow rocky stream beds into the wilderness. Along the way, my eyes searched for fossils and arrowheads. Sometimes, I got lucky.

Posted 1 Year Ago

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1 Year Ago

Thanks Sam. Having worked for several years at the Natural History Museum in London, stimulated my i.. read more
Wow, what an interesting thing to do. I am a Last of The Summer Wine, and Monarch of the Glen lover and am crazy about England. Post some pictures of the fossils please. Valentine

Posted 1 Year Ago

1 of 1 people found this review constructive.


1 Year Ago

Thanks Kathy. This is an older poem resurrected from the days when I could still clamber around the.. read more

1 Year Ago

Norman, I have the series, and also many others that were shown here on PBS stations. Kathie

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9 Reviews
Added on February 25, 2016
Last Updated on February 10, 2017



Essex UK, United Kingdom

At the age of 87, I still believe that every cloud has a silver lining. The only problem is ........ I can only afford cooking foil...............;-)) more..

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