A tiny grey pack of potential
torn open with Christmas-like glee
The old ones retired,
with love, though, not fired
and the body rests over my knee
It’s my first time, and so I work slowly,
prickle my finger with pain
But I push and I turn,
I’m trying to learn
for when I next do this again.
I’m helped by the original owner
who gave me this beautiful thing
It has taken me years
but I’ve reshaped my fears
and now I have brand new strings.
Something will come if you let it
The words will arrive if you wait…
I now sleep on the step of the doorway
with one eye keeping watch on the gate.
I get up and I go through the motions
One by one put the demons to bed
Even monsters, I found, have a place in the world
but don’t let them rest in your head
I’m happy to be back at boot camp
Where I’m leaning against my front door
From here I can see all the mountains to climb
and my feet are both flat on the floor
I will wait for the gate to open
I will wait for the clouds to clear
I know when they do
that the sky will be blue
and I’ll be a long way from here.
Both too tired to really relax
they slept until mid morning
There was talk of breakfast to honor the day
but alarms were just met with yawning
The sunlight eventually stirred them both
and they stumbled out of bed
Now too late for breakfast, not enough time for brunch
so tea was drunk instead
Half an hour was dreamed away
with talk of what they’d do that day,
if the Sunday were theirs for the taking
We could paint that wall
or unpack those boxes
or maybe do some baking!
Pour me some more, he said
and she smiled
but the pot was bitter and cold
‘Is this how every Sunday will be
now that we’re married and old?’
Together they laughed at the shape of their life
then it really was time to go
He went downtown, she stayed up
and the next few hours were slow
Finally at five o’clock
she decided the day wasn’t done
So she put on all of the clothes she could find
and headed out in the fading sun
She brought him gifts of decaf coffee
and gluten free red velvet cake
And there on the floor of New York’s Penn Station
the couple sat down for their date.
The coffee, of course,
by this time, was cold
but the cake was incredibly good
Then half an hour came and went
‘I should get back.’
‘I know, you should.’
They left, together, hand in hand
and she said, as they got to his door
‘There’s no one I’d rather spend half an hour with
having coffee and cake on the floor.’
Stolen moments are sometimes the best
when you thought that a day day was lost
For years she flew over oceans for him,
what’s a train ride and a bit of frost?
A year seems like a life time when it feels like you’ve slept through most of it
Certainly long enough to beat a few good grooves of doubt into your own back
You trace them now with your fingers and suddenly they are ugly and real
but a wise man your Father introduced you to told you that everything is cracked
and that through those cracks the light you have been looking for
but hiding from is able to slip through
You could fill them in. Smooth them down and paint over them
and nobody but you would ever know they were there
Or you could leave the wounds open to dry out in the sun,
let the little one that lives under your bed help you lick them clean
and then see if you can’t make something of them one day.
Share this work with someone though… you waited long enough to be able to
Colour in the big gaps together
Then underneath that perfect surface is a secret belonging to both of you
and you’re not quite so blinded by the day light steaming through the holes in your armor.
But leave a few. English houses need to breathe a little.
So let in the light and the air from outside
and if it all gets too much
you can throw on a blanket
or find a friend to build you a fire.
When I can’t sleep I write poems about polar bears…
Harry is a polar bear
that lives under my bed
He didn’t like the Arctic
so he’s moved in here instead
He keeps my toesies nice and warm
and doesn’t steal the sheets
He reads me poems and epic tales
from goldilocks to Keats
Sometimes we talk of the meaning of life
while I brush out his coat
and I ask what he’ll do
when the ice caps melt
and he says he’ll just hop on a boat
Harry chases the monsters from under my bed
and guards my door at night
I like sharing my room with a polar bear
Harry, could you please turn out the light?
An application of every day pressure
to not simply ‘exist’.
To add colour
To produce an idea,
come up with a creation,
to make something,
be something extraordinary
if only for a mere moment.
Making a moment,
taking a moment,
capturing a thought
and taking it somewhere
beyond the bounds of accepted possibility.
This is my challenge
my greatest joy
and purest passion.
my very reason to be.
Never can I escape my own worst critic.
Nor understand the solitary source
of my own internal inspiration.
A number of my other individual poems, as well as a few collections that
I have written, can be found in the Poetry section of the main menu.
Folded for the evening in my favourite family chair
Switching on while switching off I let my mind run bare
Three hours I think have almost passed and I have hardly shifted
But returning to reality my mood has not much lifted
If anything it’s slipping like my body down this seat
The feeling fills up backwards from my head down to my feet
But logic plays a tricky game that time I know can master
If I stop counting seconds then the minutes will go faster
For somehow twenty-seven months has turned into nineteen
The first date I was waiting for’s already passed and been
One term of school, just half a year, no measurement is wrong
But twenty-seven weeks to wait is really not that long.
Hoards of haughty hollyhocks
hold their heads high,
stretching steadily skywards,
straining for the sun.
The more senior citizens
are strapped to their canes,
hoping to hold out a few more seasons
before their children
and their children’s children
leave them behind
in the great upward race.
A wandering wind waves
the sturdy stems from side to side,
but fearlessly flaunting
the miracles of nature
they fail to fall flat on their flowers.
A number of my other individual poems, as well as a few collections that I have written, can be found in the Poetry section of the main menu.