Feathers

A magpie gave me two feathers today.

I stuck them in my hat.

When a bird in flight gives a gift of joy,

you can’t ask better than that.

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Apples and Bees

I would lie beneath the trees
And dream the hours away, in heat
And listen to the hum of bees

The apples tumble at my feet
Full of warmth and summer sun
Dripping juice so ripe and sweet

How smooth this nectar on the tongue!
I steep my sense in joy, replete
And feel that I am ever young

The sun will sink, the evening comes
As the hourglass, tireless, runs
But I will stay here, in the night,
To look up to the endless stars,
Rotating glimmers of delight

Balancing

such shadows come and fall on me
from joy to sorrow, like a switch
i fight to turn the light back on
i don’t know where the joy has gone

a single note in some old song
a word not said
a thought unwise
i try to see where i went wrong

the tender sweetness
on a breeze
can turn my heart
and make me freeze

and then i go and sit a while
and lean against a steady tree
and wait to smile again
and see

like the earth we reach for warmth
and the thirsty kiss of rain
all things in nature
are the same

it’s all a mirror of ourselves
dimmed and scratched
things unclear
and things not seen

this constant flow
of dark and light
is just the deep souls day and night
and the turning of the year

Hidden Weeds

with this sorrow comes the sorrow
of every loss I ever had
it’s a pool of hidden depths
full of hidden weeds, obscured

is this the same for those occasions
when I’m glad? do i recall a well of joy?
gladness seems to stand alone
no predictions and no source

I know too well the ebb and flow
joy transcends all of itself
that moment like a rising wave
that bubbles up with light and air

today I cannot turn the tide
I sleep the sleep of constant loss
I’m sick with sad complexities
and all the tears I ever cried

if love were simple, as I think,
this stream would never lead
another sorry sigh away
but would swim me back again

Changes

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

Berries

looking out of my winter window
to ice cold streets below
i see huddled figures
trudging through the snow

the children skip faster in winter
that’s what we all should do
imagine the shopping centre
full of skipping people

then christmas shopping would be
a dance of joy so merry
flocks of people like robins
seeking the shining red berries

In Luxulyan Wood

the disused viaduct spanned the valley
a leap of arches, stone piled up on stone,
where old channelled streams, cut into cold clay,
flowed away from the hazed heat of the day

i followed to the ancient, cool damp wood,
no longer frequented, my secret place
i was lost in thoughts and wandering daydreams
wrapped in deep silence, woven with bird-song

surrounded by scents, the creaking of trees
the soft bubbling sounds of the nearby streams
a rustle of leaves on a sudden breeze
that hushed and sighed with the fall of the wind

leaving deep shade for dazzling sunlight
i entered the clearing, briefly stood, blind
as my sight cleared, he was suddenly there
he in the east, i in the west, both transfixed

suspended in time, an unbroken gaze,
we stood in communion across space
the race of my heart the only sound
i slowly knelt to the ground without thought

he stood in a sunbeams magical glow
a fox, the like of which i never saw,
tall, strong, gleaming in deep red coat, he shone
the King of the woodland for evermore

kneeling before him quietly, i smiled,
making my respect and intention clear
our eyes held, i his bondsman and loyal kin,
in a place that stretched through air, almost near

a moment of true beauty kept me there
when, turning quickly, he vanished away
leaving me, standing in awe and pure joy
a vision of gold, held still in my heart