Where once the fisher’s cot could ill contrive
A frugal welcome for the chance-come guest,
In gay saloons, with ostentation drest,
Large tables shine, and noisy caterers thrive;
Off sands made black with swarms from labour’s hive
The lonely shrimpers vanish, dispossest;
Where poets mused, the showman plies his jest,
And jaded horses plough the sandy drive.
The strenuous tide has lost its task: men rear,
Of alien stone, huge barriers rudely strong;
For music of the rushy bank we hear
The grating band—a stroller’s gipsy song;
While that sea-monster millipede, the pier,
Puts out from shore to please a giddy throng.
(Sonnets Round the Coast, p. 214)