Archive for May, 2012

The storm

Posted: May 31, 2012 in nature poems, Poetry

Tonight at dversepoets Sam has laid down an interesting fun challenge. Write a structured poem, but produce it in free verse. This is a Tanka form (five line nature poem with 5 syllables, 7, 5, 7, 7) .. but ‘chopped’ up into free verse of course!

Black rags
on the breeze, crows taking their chance
as gales
lash the trees.

Scumbling clouds drag
meshed rain
across fields.

A lone hill farm

its breath.


Roll up, roll up

Posted: May 27, 2012 in urban poems

This weekend at dversepoets we’re enjoying the fun of the fair … but it is a transient world which I’ve tried to capture here

Shouts and squeals from girls in heels
with candy floss hair and darting eyes,
measuring up fairground boys
cockily swaggering over a swooping ride,
stealing kisses and pocketing cash.

Shouts and squeals from up on high
as a roller coaster reaches the point
of no return. Hanging there
for a precarious second, then hurtling down
leaving breaths and screams drifting over the scene.

Shouts and squeals writhe through the dark
as a train clatters on, its passengers
huddling afraid and yet
willing the ghosts to screech in their face
letting surges of fear inject them with life.

Crashes and bangs as the fair comes down
and nomads of fun prepare to move on,
planning the invasion of another town
that is never their own.

Tonight Victoria at dversepoets has laid down the challenge about stream of conscious writing. Recently I went to see David Hockney’s incredible exhibition at the Royal Academy and straightaway sat down and wrote straight from my mind. This was the result word for word from my notebook which I plan ultimately to work into a poem .. but love the stream format for teasing out those raw first impressions.


Vibrant, nature-defying colours smearing Yorkshire’s fields, hills, tracks. A rainbow hue storming across canvas in room after room. Locked away in the sombre grey elegant skin of the Royal Academy, this riot flows from gallery to gallery, people swarming like bees round the honey pots of colours. Drawing into themselves a conflict of English scenes and riotous colours.

The argument

Posted: May 20, 2012 in nature poems, Poetry

This weekend dversepoets is encouraging us to use verbs from one arena and apply them to another. Here I use nature to put a different perspective on human emotions.

Iron sky,
steel river.
There’s an edge to the day.
Steady rain sulks its way
over the landscape.
muscular trees
flex their branches
in a rising wind.

the storm breaks.
Wind rips through,
stripping trees.
Birds and leaves tumble
over the fields.
River rages as it flees to the sea.
And in the black cold night
shocked stars blink back the tears

The Poets Pub has thrown up its doors .. join us at

These numbers are too big for my brain,
which itself has 100 billion cells that fizz and whirl.
Radio man bursts into my sleep.

A new galaxy is found! It’s far away
this cloud of stars, an unseen sprinkling
of silver dust in deepest blackness.

Even further away than San Francisco,
which is pretty far out.

It was an 11 hour flight,
but worth every cramped mile.
A city from a different world,
a solar storm of life.

Bohemian energy arcing over Saulsalito,
striking Golden Gate, earthing itself in
an explosion of human fizz on Pier 39.

A 5 dollar tram ride
grinds over Nob Hill,
screeches its way
down to 6th street.

But this galaxy has numbers bigger than these.
This is a new discovery, but also history.
Our vision is locked in on a view
from 13 billion light years ago.

How’s that for a figure
to freeze your mind?

They’re staring at history
through Hubble and claiming:

‘It’s new!’

a galaxy that has long moved on.
It will take me
1.35 million years
at 17,600mph
to reach this place.

My brain fuses as this
meteor storm of numbers
strikes the surface.

Pier 39 is fine.
So is an 11 hour flight,
5 dollars and
a street numbered 6.

These numbers are real,
figures that fit
the galaxy in my head.

Flight restrictions

Posted: May 10, 2012 in Poetry, urban poems

After an eternity in queues,
I stand on the threshold of the airport scanner,
wondering just how deep it can search.

Will impatience trigger its alarm?
Can it probe into my neuro-pathways,
note the quiet throb behind my temples,
frustration humming away, a nuclear reactor
ignorant of forces that can break down its walls.

Coatless and shoeless,
I am a refugee on the border
waiting for the acceptance of another country.

Finally a finger beckons.
I step forward into the vacuum
of a delayed heartbeat and …


I am free to fly,
but not in the way of birds.