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Another childhood memory. The barge was abandoned by the river bank opposite the spot where many hours were spent fishing and swimming.

Fenland barge

Pz-avatarby Paul Cornes04 Dec 2013

Slowly disintegrating from neglect and decay,
the fragmented hulk of a fenland barge wastes away,
abandoned by the river bank.
Eroding currents, sluggish, rank,
meld rust and rotted wood with underlying clay.

Stagnant pools in the hull are now a refuge
for nesting waterfowl. Deeper, with piscine subterfuge,
tiny aquatic creatures breed
among roots of willow and reed,
and thrive amid excrescence of a bygone age.

The derelict barge bears witness to busier days,
when horse-drawn traffic plied all local waterways
from Burwell Lode across the fen
via Upware, Cam and Ouse to Lynn.
A passing trade now only viewed through history’s gaze.