Tag Archives: poetry

snow bliss

caressing mountains
borne up by diamond crystals
surfing gravity

(just in case you wondered what I was up to just now!)



Poefusion Monday Mural

At the other end of silence
my pen perches, heavy with stories,
and eager to fly again.

For Poefusion’s Monday Mural

Song of fragility

These precious wooden eggshells
Out of their tough cases they are vulnerable
But locked away they cannot sing –
when singing is their reason for being.

There is always a tender tension
in a good musician whose instrument
is resting on a chair
even as he chats with colleagues
in an orchestral teabreak.
part of the mind is always attentive
to the fragility he has drawn
out of its case. An attention
not guilty, but born of gratitude
for the open trust
that allows them to sing together.

The defenceless fragility of the walls
is what allows them to vibrate.
The strength of a tree planed down
to this delicate membrane of music.
And something is betrayed when these
fragile cocoons of sound
are ruptured by carelessness or spite.

My body is a dusty guitar
strung by the hair that falls
past the curve of my waist.
Wounds patched, barely visible now,
wholeness restored by patient hours of healing
until the intact walls are ready
to sing again. Yet still the dust lies thick,
undisturbed by the waves of emotion
that once shrugged away both dust and time
The waves of emotion that used to make me tremble
flowing up the shell of me and coming out in sound.
The waves that were stranded in the doldrums
when the songs of my heart
and my body
were silenced by the pain of love’s abandonment.

Unplayed, an instrument
grows stiff, loses its sweetness
must be coaxed back by the gentleness
of patient fingers. As if the wood
knows how fragile its defences are
and fears to once again
be twisted to play uncongenial tunes
by hands that force its fragile walls
not to resonate
but distort.

Yet a body that has once known the joy of song
will always yearn to sing again.
And the music that is in me
cannot be silenced
for long.

This responds to two prompts – the picture above, by crzycowgrl046 at photobucket, which is the Monday Mural at Poefusion, and this week’s prompt at One Single Impression – defences down.


…Explain how poetry
pursues the human like the smitten moon
above the weeping, laughing earth; how we
make prayers of it…

Interesting spat going on at the moment – an exam board took one of Carol Ann Duffy’s poems off the syllabus because it might encourage violence. The quote above comes from the poem she wrote in response.

I’ve always enjoyed her work hugely, and I love this particular phrase, which says so much about what poetry is, and can be!

Poetry rules


Actually, I’m thinking about a post I saw on Kelli’s blog Book of Kells, where she explored the rules she uses for poetry. Which made me ponder, what are my rules?

  1. Mostly I write from the topic outwards, letting the poem find its own form. Sometimes the poems stay as free verse, sometimes I notice patterns of rhyme or rhythm or repetition starting to form, and choose to encourage them. Less often, I decide on a structure early on and try to fit the poem into it – it can be an interesting exercise but some poems just don’t like to have a particular form imposed.
  2. I try to make sure I read my poems aloud to get a feel for the rhythm and sound of the words. I should do this more often though! I almost always use stress to structure the rhythm, rather than going for strict meter which tends to distort the poem.
  3. For me the idea at the heart of the poem is crucial. Sometimes I just let the idea stand and don’t fret with the words too much.
  4. I am trying to spend more time marinating the ideas before I put them into poem form – various exercises recently have shown me that this makes for much richer poems! Which can mean gathering ideas and letting them sit around in a notebook, or starting a poem with a writing practice.
  5. I feel every poem needs some element of brightness about it. I don’t feel a poem’s finished unless it has at least a glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel. Yes, there is sadness in the world, and expressing it is important, but for me brooding on it without any brightness just makes me and my readers more gloomy!
  6. I try to write about the things I don’t want to write about, for whatever reason. In particular, I deliberately decided to allow myself to write as many poems as I wanted about my last relationship – the creative process has contributed greatly to the healing process, and vice versa. And I don’t want to choke off that fruitful connection by worrying that my readers will get bored, or will judge that I’m making no progress at all in getting over it.
  7. I try not to use words for the sake of appearing “poetical”. I do like the vividness of language that flows from taking a different perspective on the situation – for me that’s the essence of poetry. But it’s the perspective that has to come first, otherwise it just becomes a pose!

Sun, sky and stork

Some days simply soar.
Some days, the clouds are just
an elegant fresco highlighting
the azure dome of sky.

Some days the light radiates joy
without dazzling.
Some days the earth surpasses
the most beautifully imagined heaven.

Some days all our dreams
come flying swiftly home
borne on the effortless span
of gliding white wings.

This day, and all days, may your wings
soar through your life’s heartfelt story
writing eloquent clouds
on the bright page of sky.

For Skywatch Friday and One single impression

Traveller’s tales

This post may take some time to load, but I think it will be worth it. These photos were all taken on one spectacular plane journey (from South to North America), which I and my notebook enjoyed greatly! I have to say that long journeys are great for getting lots of writing done!

Stern peaks chronicle
In golden calligraphy
The elements’ war

High in mountain air
I forgot the caress of rain
The softness of haze

A landscape doodled
With meandering paintbrush
By some toddler god.


High as the proud crests
Of towering thunderheads
I soar over sea.

Island paradise
Haloed in dreamy reefs of
Pearl, gold and turquoise

A beacon beckons
Bright in the softness of night
Calling me onwards.


Perhaps appropriately for a post about travel, I’m posting this on the Meme Express.