Cloud garden

Through the small square of glass

That I watch from my chair,

A garden of clouds grows high up

In the air,

Where the grass is cool blue

Lake-like, a sky-sea

And the cumulonimbus

Grow wild and free.

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Fame

I sold my soul for rock and roll

And yet, when the contract was written,

The penmanship done, I’d hardly won.

Despite adoring fans, glad hands, reunions planned,

Twenty-four years at the top of the charts,

Fans hearts, groupies throwing themselves at me,

Oblivious to the woman behind the mask,

It was just enough to be seen with me,

Fame, though glorious, is never truly free.

Inspired by Doctor Faustus.

Savernake Forest

Twilight sinks upon the forest,

Tightening her cloak tinged rosy by light pollution

Over the old oaks.

Venerable trees, you mighty king of limbs,

And white road oak,

Bent by the years and grown tall with time,

Wait still in the silence of the early evening,

Patient shadows in the gathering night.

Crows caw, calling one another to roost,

A dog walker exchanges an easy greeting,

Two damp canine snouts snuffling the well-trodden mud

That coats path and boots in equal measures.

Feet trudging, jeans caught by long-fingered brambles

We walk until the hooting of two owls resounds

In a ghostly echo around the forest.

The dragon stirs…

The coils of the dragon

beneath the ground

twist and writhe,

scale sliding on cobalt scale.

Claws sharp as winter

and twice as deadly,

rasp one against the other

as she stirs.

The packed earth breaks, shifts,

her weight moves root and stump

to give herself birth

once again.

A New Year-ish poem exploring the prospect of new life metaphorically and literally as we end the old and ring in the new this week.

Your hand in mine

Ten years ago I stood here

Looking out at the view

That hasn’t changed much since then.

The road from your house

Winding down toward the distant water meadows,

A patch of shadow against the strident neon lights

Of the sprawling supermarket that dominates the dark horizon.

Christmas bulbs flash and turn rainbow tricks

A trail of artificial light interrupting the pools of darkness

That gather underneath car chassis, kerb and manicured lawn.

In front of the house, a lamppost stretches its neck towards the star-shot sky,

The yellow pastel glow flickers slightly

Softened by the strands of spiderweb that are slung underneath the lamp.

Ten years ago I stood here and made choices that shaped me,

Tonight I make the same choice,

And reach out for your hand with mine.

Muse (creative writing)

We had a sort of open relationship,

A six-month commitment

Where at first, it was all or nothing,

Frenzied scribblings, long lines

A list of every known romantic cliché going,

All I could think about was

You.

After those first few crazy weeks,

We settled down into familiar patterns,

I began to anticipate the words you would bring to my lips,

I liked how you knew me better than I knew myself,

And recently? Recently we’re not talking much,

It’s like life, work, children

All of these things are pushing their way between us,

But hey, Muse, here are some words for you again.

Lost time

And time, like film

Unspooling from a camera,

Piles in disregarded negatives

On the floor

Frame lost on frame.

I do not have the skill, or art

To tinker, flickering with deft fingers

To rewind time

And set the film back in motion again.