Back Again

The fire is laid.
The house is furnished
and here we are,
hopeful lovers,
passing by this way again.

No doubt the storms may sometimes blow.
We both still need to learn and grow.
This time though, it’s not the same.
Fear wont drive us both away.
The fire burns warm.
I fixed the roof against the rain.

This time darling,
through your tears,
you grew strong.
I couldn’t leave.
I had to stay.
You’re not alone.
We made it home.


No Home

every land is empty
i wander here and there
remembering the other times
i travelled here alone
~ without you there’s no home

time is passing slowly
the fires are turned to ash
i seek new wood to burn for you
a flame to light the way
but you can’t see the beacons
you’re too far away

the birds still sing
the river flows
i know these trodden ways
~ wherever i may roam
without you there’s no home

Hidden Daffodils

the day is dim and poorly lit,
clouds are gathering in the west,
the leaves are shivering on the trees,
my shoes are worn, my pockets thin,
there’s no money left again,
the forecast warns of storms and rain

the shadows underneath the trees are full of hidden daffodils

the windows creak and draughts blow in
how bad can this old house become
there’s not much here to laugh about
this sort of joke is lost on me
the tap is dripping in the bath
the fire wont light, my cat is sad,
she’s curled up in a huddled ball
there’s nothing left to eat at all

the shadows underneath the trees are full of hidden daffodils

counting blessings I find some,
there’s still a roof above my head,
i still live, i still breathe,
my head is full of memories,
i can think, i can dream,
and winter always turns to spring

the shadows underneath the trees are full of hidden daffodils

Mud Child (a Haibun)

My first true love was earth, dry earth and water mixed, piling dirt in mounds, trying to shape the mud. Digging, digging, digging, squatted on the earth, pouring water in to make a captured pool. I watched it soak away.

Broken finger nails
Scrabbling at resistant earth,
Burrowing with worms.

Alone I worked day after day, shaded by the Yews, until the puppy came, near as old as I, and just as keen to dig. We worked on side by side, driven by curiosity, searching for the truth or an ancient bone. The earth flew out behind us as we dug the hole.

When would water rise?
Could we find the fearsome fire?
Could we reach the source?

Stopped by tangled roots.
Water ran between my palms,
Mud sucked at my feet.

We ran off to play,
Covered head to toe in earth.
We’d dig another day.


it’s a quiet early morning in springtime
rooftops arise from a gentle grey mist
the dawn streets are in silence and empty
and all in the drowsy town are asleep
it’s then i go out, in to the garden

it is then that my heart, sighing, grows still
in peace, alone with the trees

it’s a quiet time of day in the summer
when the dusk starts to fade slowly away
the sun sinks behind the far distant hill
and the birds in their nests lower their songs
with an occasional voice they settle

it is then that my heart, sighing, grows still
in peace, my mind flies away

it’s a quiet autumn day by the river,
a mirror, shining, reflecting the sky,
where white swans silently glide by in dreams
and the willows bow, heavy-headed,
a soft breeze makes the calm water shiver

it is then that my heart, sighing, grows still
in peace, lost in the beauty

it’s a quiet winters day at the fireside
coals caverns burn in a cast iron grate
casting shadow as flames leap and fade
imagination wanders in landscapes
the world outside grows forgotten and dark

it is then that my heart, sighing, grows still
in peace at the end of the day

Little Peace

with a double-ended stick
chance pokes at me
right off the chart
right off the map
can i be blamed
for not trusting that,
when it can shatter my world?

frying pan; liar
true-teller; fire
just about sums it up

why should it be, that in telling the truth,
the people that mean the most to me
are the ones that trust me the least?

protecting themselves
from the beast
i suppose
and who can blame them
for that

shackled by earth
from the day of my birth
my mind has done battle
to keep my heart free
a life-sentenced prisoner
i long for release
or a little grace-given peace


passion is passing, affection is pure
love doesn’t have to be physical
i will quell this desire

but my skin is on fire
it burns to be touched

if I didn’t love you this feeling would never exist
there is no satisfaction anywhere else
there is no temptation I can’t resist

but my skin is on fire
it yearns to be touched

there are so many other things we can do
i don’t understand why i want this so much
it’s not the most important aspect of you

but my skin is on fire
it burns to be touched

turning my mind away as far as I can
filling my head with other thoughts
thoughts that cool, hoping for peace

but my skin is on fire
it longs to be touched


the seasons keep on turning
i gather wood for flame

i think i see you leaving
this time last year you came

the time for winter fires
is never twice the same

this time it may be sorrow
where it was joy before

all the things I had last year
i see i have no more

i remind myself again
to fill the winters store

we must live to journey on
together or apart

i gather all that i may need
before the dark days start

there’s safety in the cellar
and in the hollowed heart


the dark is full of shining stars
the moon will fade tomorrow

the morning sun is coming up
these things are sure as turning fate
but i can only sit and wait
the night will surely follow

the house is there but we are not
no fire burns within the grate
now the hour is growing late
home and my heart are hollow

no matter how the birds may sing
I sit here full of sorrow