Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Poem 16 of 30: Case Study

This poem is a little thank you note to the many charities out there such as the Samaritans and the Red Cross who give people someone to talk to when they most need it. 

Case Study
Too often bedded
by guys she simply despised.
Constantly asking
when she can drop the disguise.
Fog never lifting,
obscuring clear line of sight.
Not far from crazy,
infrequent glimpses of light.
Yet just another
day she has yet to survive.
Mind turning violent.
Is it worth staying alive?
Bad thoughts,
The absence of choices
with no one to understand.

Easier walking
when someone’s holding your hand.


Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Poem: Sun Dance

Day 15 and half way on the poem a day challenge that is National Poetry Writing Month

Today's poem inspired by the sun and the fact it seems to be turning up more reliably now we're heading into a proper Spring.

Sun Dance 

Sun tapped on her bedroom window
but as she still wasn’t talking to him,
stretched and yawed like a waking cat,
moving to a cooler patch of pillow.
Sun tapped again, this time managing to edge
fingers of light through the curtain’s skirts
projecting clean, bright flashes of optimism on the wall.
Come on, he said, time to forgive me.
I can forgive, but I can’t forget she snapped.
I waited for you all day and you never showed.
Do you know how embarrassed I was?
You gave your word and you broke it!
But you know how unreliable I am in Winter babe,
the sun sang in soft warm tones.
I always come for you in the Spring.
That was weeks ago.  I’ve here now. Come and play.
The last three words were whispered, accompanied
by a particularly warming beam that kissed her smooth shoulder.
“Mmm, that’s nice” she said and peeled back the duvet.
The sun, needing no encouragement,
flooded her open upper body,
nibbled at her neck, shots of Vitamin D
started to kick like caffeine, playfully and suggestively
picked where the nightshirt guarded her breasts.
I’ve seen you naked before he said, come and play.
She relented, kicked off the bedclothes and
tumbled into the shower for decency’s sake
before layering scents and perfumes by routine
then shucking into her best denim shorts,
favourite strappy top, which although like all the others,
somehow made her feel sexier.  
It was only five minutes from first tap to being ready
on the doorstep, no plan but with car keys and credit card standing by.
A chilled breeze instantly brought goose-bumps to her skin.
Drops of rain splashed in mocking sing-song rhythm.
The sun was nowhere to be seen.
“Bastard” she spat and went back to bed.


Monday, 14 April 2014

14 of 30 Poem "Another Bad Match" A response to true life events.

Sadly, this is my response to the story of 3 people killed in Kansas for answering truthfully the question "Are you Jewish"?

The story is here

Another Bad Match
This if the fifth first line I’ve written.
When a writer starts running out words,
you know things are serious.
They call it drilling down.
Clicking from headline to summary
to the heart of the story.
In this case, the broken heart of the story.
Three dead in Kansas and the deeper you drill
the darker things seem. 
Three Jews killed, simply for being Jews.
As a gentile, you like to assume
that beast was slain 70 years ago,
tears shed, shame owned, lessons learned
yet here it is again.
On the eve of Passover, no less
a village called Shalom, no less
a conspiracy of coincidence
or premeditated, bitter, ironic twist?
Where do people get the energy to hate,  
so motivated by other people’s heritage and
blind to the shame they bring to their own.?
In candlelight and respectful silence
I will send my thoughts of love;
home-made prayers for the lost and grieving.
Standing with you in brother and sisterhood,
Shylock’s speech about pinpricks, bleeding and
hurt with the same weapons
sadly as true as ever.

Sunday, 13 April 2014

Poem 13 of 30 So Not Hollywood

For the first time in a long time, we went to the cinema yesterday. Watching the trailers and adverts on a huge scale, amplified the so perfect appearance of the actors and got me to thinking. This poem is the result.

So Not Hollywood
Escape from reality, go to the movies.
That’s the theory.
I find it grinds my face into the dirt of true life
with all the grace and finesse of
Arnold Schwarzenegger's acting.
It’s the “so-unlike-me-ness” of people on screen.
The languid elegance of romantic leads,
the sassy smart snappiness of their dialogue,
apart from the ripped torsos and
teeth that cause snow blindness.
How could I ever fit into their world?
But I settle in, letting those questions
float away on the sea of suspended disbelief,
punctuated by the holding of hands and
changes of position as we find new ways to snuggle.
Later, the counter argument knocks on my door.
Anyone can be on their game for a hundred minutes
that took three months to film,
a writer five years to draft, sculpt and
re-write and re-write and re-write.
We devise our scenes daily
making tragic and comic gold
and the story is still worth telling.  
Our love is so not Hollywood
but it should be. 


Poem for Day 12, Slightly late Song of the Land-Locked Lover

Apologies for the late post. I will be back on track by tonight. This poem is in a much older style with a strict rhyming scheme. Sometimes the urge overtakes me to write in the style of a romantic poet from 200 years ago and NaPoWriMo is the perfect excuse.
Song of the Land-Locked Lover

Sing to me of the gentle sea,
of waves that breathe at night,
of ancient ships that deftly slip,
sails set towards the light.
For I long for a mermaid’s song
borne on the wind like lace,
that reaches ears and soothes the fears
etched deep on moonlit face.
Let wind and rain cleanse me again
to start a life anew.
Cross an ocean, set in motion
sketches of bolder hue.
Scrub my mind, until memory blind
Of love the heart regrets
Of risking all, only to fall
Pray to a foolish bet.
So, sing to me of the gentle sea,
of waves that breathe at night,
of ancient ships that deftly slip,
As I whisper “Goodnight”.

Friday, 11 April 2014

Love in the time of Coalition poem. Day 11 of 30

Oh dear! A "Got out of the wrong side of the bed" poem. Apologies for the grumpiness but sometimes only a moan will do!

Love in the time of Coalition
Another pale grey sky
as if Hollywood will green screen it in later
in time for the big premiere.
Underneath, life goes on in unsubtle hues;
people green with envy, feeling blue or
painting the town red.
Cut to a Waitrose car park
where a perkily attractive young mother
dressed in the smuggest of pinks,
tight enough to show she’s got her figure back
after months of Pilates with Miguel
decants her offspring from a white steed of a 4x4.
You somehow just know sun-dried tomatoes
will be a key component of her shopping list
alongside feta cheese and organic alfalfa sprouts.
I am annoyed with myself for being annoyed.
I was never bothered before but four years
of coalition government now showing their true colours,
polarising rich and poor,
penalising the helpless,
padding the pockets of party political contributors
has eroded my neutrality.
The enamel is worn and the root is exposed.
Government by the people for the people
rings hollow as the millionaire cabinet,
insulated from high street reality
claims to share the hurt. Bollocks!
Sulken 32 second apologies,
triumphs of arrogance over responsibility,
the feeling they have a right to rule,
screams ancient feudal rights
as poverty (and that is its proper name)
creeps and stalks and encroaches.

Meanwhile, champagne consumption at Westminster
has increased by 72% over three years ago.
Draw your own conclusion!

Thursday, 10 April 2014

Day 10. Two for one special!

Two poems, though one is a four-liner that I wrote today for a reading at Wenlock (ahead of the lovely Wenlock Poetry Festival at the end of the month).

Between the river and the mountains
Between the earth and sky
Between sleep and wakefulness
Between the how and why
Between the roar and thunder
Between the wind and rain
Between dusk and dawn
Between peace and pain
Between beach and breaking wave
Between sense and shame
Between thought and reason
My soul always bears your name
Tartan Twin
Should Scotland win independence
On more twin towns, they’re rather keen.
If Wenlock changed to Wedlock,
Much Wedlock could twin with Gretna Green.