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Posts from the ‘trees’ Category


I have loved you since the first leaves fell
When the darkness dropped like a stone and all went quiet
You arose in my mind like a perfect shell
On a vast beach laden with jewelled sand
That slipped through our fingers and toes like time
I have loved you since the first moment of Summer
Brought the sweat to my skin
And made me dive deep in the river where we met
When the snow bleached the ground a million miles
Between us I have loved you
Through exasperated cries
A prison of pain
Long dark nights
Loaded with tears
Your honesty pierced the sky where I hung my dreams out to dry
And bemoaned the passing years
I have loved you since the first drops of rain
Made a country green that sings in my heart still
With water and wood and wide open space

Nobody knows anything
All that is a mirage and the story unfolds indifferently
At the end of magic


Autumn Self

My autumn self is walking
Not knowing where it is going
But feeling
The outstretched arms of orange trees
The empty expanse of a damp cold field
Reaching inside to a place that is tender
An aching seed of shaky surrender that says
This is it then?
This isn’t half bad
Or half good
Don’t try and be the one you think you should
The gaps between things are trying to tell you to slow down
Stop even
Breathe in the Saturday afternoon gloom
It’s only going to get worse after all
So why not start small?
Admit that success is a tiny fire in the heart
Nothing more
Nothing to roll over and die for
And this dull absence of everything you want
Is simply the vacuum from which all is created
Even as long as you have waited
It was only ever the beginning
Of endlessness


Sun warming fresh ground after rain
Scent of cypress, earth and ancient stone
Above the old city the volcano steams divertedly
While tourists wielding selfie sticks
Search for a piece of the past to place in the present
I am in my head, not feeling
Only the grooves of cartwheels on huge cobbles
The oddly familiar frescoes
Mosaic floors
Tiled counters and gardens made for beauty and refreshment
Theatres inviting grand gestures
The smell of Autumn fires
And the wind in the tall trees
Tell me that I am human like so many before me
Trying to lead a good life
Making mistakes
Enjoying the simple pleasures of light and cool water
Bathing in public
Food, friends, noise, geometry,
Reclining away from the crowds with a lover
In red rooms with painted birds
So soon to grow old
Searching for meaning
Or its absence
In the body of another
Shadowed by green mountains
Temples honour the unseen magic of gods
Pillars piercing sky
Breeding acorns, marble, ivy
And always the faint taste of the sea


she is falling, falling through space
in the darkness
the stars, pin points of light
she is safe
her long hair billows in waves
like a parachute
white silk wings capture the air
she is safe
faster and faster she falls and her shoes
are pulled from her feet by fairies
the moon looks on, majestic and chipper
the night sky waits, waits
for her ribcage to open
the palms of her hands to relax and receive
the love she is craving
but fall she must, and the cliffs
look on in kind sympathy
as the chilly gusts let her feet know
she is alive
and her arms slowly rise
she is dancing
the darkness holds her as she falls
into the abyss of safety
‘go deeper’
say the trees, ancient, wise, forgiving
‘fear is your friend
and the forest awaits your soft heart’
she is smiling, as the moon smiles
she is safe
the stars wink on
and the icy wind sings on her skin
as she falls through space in the darkness
the ends of her fingers outstretched
release beams of light
and the birds of the lake
take her skirts in their tiny beaks
as the cold becomes warm
and she glides weightless, a white feather
towards the downward glade
to land on the forest floor
and here she lies on a carpet of leaves
and frost and earth and moonlight
looking up at the skies
surrounded by all the creatures of darkness
although she is still
and the night is quiet
in her heart she is always falling
she is safe

The Rose Porch

Wind shaking the leaves
Bringing cold to my bare legs
Autumn on its way

January Musings

National Rail succinctly sums up the flavour of the season:


I like walking on the dark windy common with its mystical pop-up lakes:


Apparently a tree IS just for Christmas – heartbreaking scenes:




Some little boys that I love, and a lion:


Frosty Buddha/Icy Sky



If you look closely, you’ll see that this bird is actually sort of skating…


Some thoughts:

1. Never underestimate how much space it takes to create anything

2. Rest is a real activity

3. Always take your warmest coat

4. Try not to get trapped underneath something, especially ice


Visit to Auschwitz and Birkenau, 5 January 2013

The end of the line

Bent trees emerge like painful growths from brown earth
Where patches of snow still lie
In proof that this is

What I thought of as my self
Vanishes to a cloud
In the grey sky
A mystery

This is true emptiness
Sucked out from the inside
Hollow, faceless

The crimes that were committed here are horrors
For which I have no words
Nor understanding

The true miracle
Is that any living being survived

And yet some defied
The lice
The rats
The cold
Mass extermination

And some escaped

Who were these people
Of whom remains
A pile of shoes
A heap of hair
Baby clothes
Suitcases carefully inscribed
With addresses
To which few would ever return?

Stand still and you can feel the beating hearts
Of all who lived and died here
In the dark chamber
Breathe in the walls
Where thousands found their final moments
Without air
A fear that chokes

And the ovens

Deprived of basic human rights
Beaten, bullied
Butchered like animals
In this functional hell

Still seeds of resilience were sown
Watered with tears, sweat
Flowers of courage flourished

And some escaped

Hope was felt
Love was felt
And sometimes, excruciating joy
Like a knife between the ribs

Even with so much force
They could not break everyone –
A monument to us all to live proud,
Be kind, stand strong

And so this person I once knew as I
Dissolves again into a modern world
Of mobile phones, coloured lights and shopping centres
History has never seemed so far

And yet the mind is quiet, still
As the grave
Thoughts come and go
The body, heavy
Moves more slowly than before

Outside a fresh wind hits my face like a welcome smile

I am alive
You are alive
We are alive