For a Hundred Years and a Hundred More

by Rohana Stentiford aged 11

Five hundred years I’ve been stuck in the sand
Since you discarded that bottle you held in your hand
I rolled down the path and under a bush
‘Til that big winter storm gave me a push

In a flooding of water, I swam in the rain
Along past the market and straight down the drain
For more than a year I lived in that river
Then a passing boat sent me on an endeavour

The estuary shoreline was teeming with weed
I got stuck for a month but then I was freed
I sailed for a decade on the roughest of waves
Before drifting into the calmest of bays

Five years on, litter pickers arrived
I was plucked from the ground, heavens alive!
I was put in a sack with others like me
But was carelessly placed too close to the sea

Then back out again with all of the others
The big ones, the small, my sisters and brothers
Accidentally drifting into a pod
It all went dark as they swallowed the lot

I lay in that whale for six whole years
Until the terrible day that confirmed my fears
On that lonely beach it fell asleep
Never again to dive and leap

Screeching gulls heaved me out
Back into the sea, away from their shouts
I could see the island in the mist
But drifted past the pier, I missed.

I hit the sand with quite a punch
My label lost, my lid was crunched
The treacherous winds pushed me up the beach
Into the dunes and out of reach

For a hundred years and a hundred more
I tried to reach the rocky shore
Trying and failing again and again
‘Til a plastic shovel ended the chain

Pulled from the sand after all that time
Five hundred years and I’m still feeling fine
When I think of the moments I’ve wasted it’s frightful
All I can say is, “Just please recycle.”

5 Responses to “For a Hundred Years and a Hundred More”

  • Talis

    Wow! That poem is really good! I’m 12 and i could never write something like that! Hop i see more of your poems!

    • Oliver

      I like your poem. I especially like how you convey the idea that something we do in a careless moment can have consequences that last for centuries. So with regard to throwing away plastic bottles, I would like to join a young poet called Rohana in saying to people: “Just please recycle”.

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