Tuesday, 20 February 2018

Dear friend,

It's spring 2018 and time to move forwards. Much has changed since my last post and now it is time to concentrate on writing. The decks are cleared and I'm ready to go. As I look out of the window I can see the early signs of spring. A few small flowers have appeared, the birds are singing again after the long winter months and the first buds are beginning to unfurl. The winter wasn't wasted and although time was a very limited commodity I took the opportunity to revisit and improve old poems and prepare for a new season.

A little time spent writing each day pays dividends in the end. If you think of a good line write it down and it will be there for you later. Springtime is a simile for new beginnings, for new life. I've been fortunate to find a new poetry group - Poetry Plus - and am making new connections.  I've been able to resume regular performances. Now it is time for new material drawing on those lines I saved when life was too crowded with other more urgent things that had to take priority.

Are you looking for a new stimulus to writing? Do you need to make new connections or revisit old work with a fresh perspective? Have you banked up lines and ideas to draw on going forwards? Are there new directions you can take your writing? Now is the time to get going on those ideas you set aside. Your perspective is unique, write about your life, how you see things. I'm am positive the greater the investment the greater the return. I sincerely wish you every success in 2018!


Fluttering against the glass

Still he beats his wings

After long and fallow years

On the outside looking in

A lonely, frightened mocking bird

With gold dust on his tongue

Carrying the burden

Of an imagined Midas touch

So much to say, so little time

He would sing for you

Bring precious stones, a holly wreath

Things borrowed, old and blue

It’s cold out on the margins

The brittle edge of time

In deepest dark the brightest stars

Gleam in solitude divine

Within this darkest hour

A kernel only night can bring

He awaits the cusp of sunrise

When he’ll catch your eye and sing


I saw you playing

In the forest

Amid sunbeams and flowers

Dancing shafts of light

I tried to touch you

Reach out and touch you

But you faded away

Into memories.

I heard you laughing

Somewhere amongst the trees

And tried to catch your words

As they passed on the breeze

I tried to listen to you

Really listen to you

But you faded away

Into silence.

I watched the seasons turn

Leaves redden and fall

Like myriad lips

Kissing the soil

I gleaned the bones

Of the forest by night

Searching for footprints

Amid moonbeams.

When spring returns

To the sleeping trees

Bringing birdsong and flowers

Dancing shafts of light

I’ll try to find you

Reach out and touch you

Fill the years that remain

With new life.

Schwere Arbeit

Time passes slowly in this place

Minutes are not of the same duration

The enjoyable ones fly by more quickly.

I stare at the clock and the hands distort

Slowly, Dali like, it loses form

Slipping down the wall leaving a snail like trail.

Trial by time and torture by telephone

With its umbilical cord

Waiting to give birth to some new complaint;

“I’ve been given your number to call when someone dies”.

Machinery whirs, faintly humming

An electronic ode to the passing day.

I insulate myself like an electrical cable

Mustn’t make the mistake of listening to the

Interminable tap-tap-taping of the lesser-spotted keyboard

Clicking like crickets in the long grass

Clickety-clack, clickety-clack

One mating board calls to another

Marking out territories on veneered desks.

You don’t fool me!

No tree has a grain so symmetrical.

Grains falling through the ether like

Sand falling through an egg timer

The egg a symbol of life

Especially at this time of year

Pregnant with promise as

The trees outside celebrate in the sunshine.

Spring arrives in a vivid burst of fragrance and colour

Which the dark little mushrooms in here can see but cannot feel.


In a different way of looking at things, it is the moment of sublime perfection

When beauty stretches its fragile fingers as cherry blossom fronds.

That instant is the one to die, the passing in itself a supreme majesty.

Nothing is permanent and they know this, with their ancient wisdom.

They celebrate the moment that the blossoms fall, fluttering down

To settle on the water, thin pink droplets like fragrant tears.

I shed myself the same for you. Lay upon your still waters for a moment

Passing a torrent of myself, like blossom, through a needle gate.

That instant is the one to die, the passing in itself a supreme majesty.

Exquisite Seam
I am told these scriptures come from beyond the self
That the ebb and flow of productive thought must end
That one cannot continue to delve into the self ad infinitum.
Yet I find the deeper I dig the richer the vein becomes, until I hit pure gold.
Pure gold is your smile and every thought I have of your exquisite beauty.

Au printemps à la salle d'attente

Spring spreads its wings
Outside the waiting room
Icicles dissolve
People thaw out
And unfurl their arms
Remembering what it’s like
To live and love.

The sky clears its throat
And coughs out clouds
Daffodils erupt
Through broken soil
As trains ply to and fro
Spitting out passengers
Engulfing waifs and strays.

Spring illuminates the fields
Empty minutes pass
The hour glass
Re-fills itself with sand.
Sunlight pierces the realm
Of battered dreams
And promises warmth
A train, a life to catch.


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