Saturday, 14 November 2020

Waiting in the dark

There's a lot of waiting going on, waiting for a vaccine, waiting to see if Christmas will be locked down, waiting for a grown up in the White House (at least that's over), just waiting for things to get better,

Waiting in the dark
Take the volume from the incessant chatter
snuff the blazing lights
sit down in darkness
comforted by patience
Stretched between twitching hope
and the sleep of nostalgia
the comfort of newness, of possible change
Or the embrace of the rush of the familiar
Wandering from one day to the next
with no race to run
no flames to feed
the metronome clocks
another day
that slips spent to the pile 
I sit in the dark
fix on one dim shape
and build around that reality
rebuild a sense of me,
that has been dismantling
Washing dressing eating working
scrolling, petitioning
wishing for time travel
either forwards or back
Waiting in the rain of speculation
for a cure, a believable all-clear, or a way out
waiting for the same again, again
to stay safe is to stay still, and let go
accept this is out of my hands
Sweet nostalgic music has lost all meaning
return to that country cut off by shifting plates
lose myself in stranger sounds, for stranger times
textural landscapes, shapes and patterns
that emerge from groans and clangs
Sylvian and Sakamoto,
T.Rex and Tom Waits
from a different time
a different place
to repaint the here and now
So I sit in night
shrouded in the weight of these times
while shadow dogs guard me
sinking into the comfort of the dark

Thursday, 2 July 2020


part 3 of the writing in pairs challenge, 
the topic was Wine, following 1) Shoes and 2) Blood.


wasps soothing buzz
licking the dregs of empty glasses
tiptoeing across the table
stumbling over crumbs
the summer sun hanging high
heat smells of dry hay
as sleepy children with sticky lips lost to their shaded dreaming
hazy afterglow
drinking in the peace

Blood is Red

Red blood
Dark skin

Light skin
Blue shirt

  beaten Black and Blue
Red dries Black

  took a knee in Red and Gold
to Outcry

Blue shirt
knee to neck
  to Ash
finally, Outcry 

children open your eyes
the grown-ups cannot explain
how accidents of birth
determine your worth

history has polarised
the beauty in our spectrum
and weak men do drive a wedge
of hatred born in fear

Blood is Red
tears are Clear 
in all God's children
a spectrum, a graduation
not Black and White,
nor Redskinned, nor Yellow
one race, one adam
revealed in many cultures, many traditions

but history is angry with injustice
awake to the heritage of privilege 
all slaves to legacy 
built on sin 
that chokes futures

Blood is Red
and washes pure
save us from our sins


The difference between men and women - Shoes

A light hearted poem about shoes (and stereotypes that might be true)

The difference between men and women - Shoes

Men have
A smart pair, and casual pair
a work pair, and a pair for the garden
Plus wellington boots, and hiking boots
and football boots, and tennis trainers,
and going down the pub trainers, and trainers for going for a run,
A pair for every function.
Equipment and uniform.

Women have
A black pair, a brown pair, a cream pair, a red pair,
A high-heeled pair, a low-heeled pair, and flats,
Crocodile, suede and leather,
Everyday, fancy - for weddings,
and for popping to the shops,
Knee-high, shin high, toeless,
Gappy, strappy, flip-floppy, trotty,
For teetering and tottering,
Slip-slapping and smacking,
A pair for every outfit, climate and mood,
And every combination.

It’s always justified,
No-one denies

Wednesday, 6 May 2020

The Descent

Sometimes you crash, and you have to live only in the present for a while.

The Descent

Loosely sliding,
and faster
gravity tips
into darkness

rewind the news
reel me out
but unravelling
the return eclipsed

from charcoal light to ink
all I have is what I believe
drowning in the dark
sobbing echoes
in isolation
held together
with invisible cords

some lift
some release
feet touch
hesitant surface
bones take weight
ahead gloom
no longer pitched
wary stumble
past shadows
twilit cavern
and out into the night sky

The distant moon and a handful of stars
half light the way
rest a while
then ascend
with celestial guides
an imprint of fear remains
faithlessness exposed

a hard path leads up
from the valley of the shadow
easing, in your lightening dawn
knowing I had not been alone