I am a Little Meadow Flower

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Bright Pink Flower Against Bright Pink Grasses

I am a little meadow flower
Slightly ragged
Barely noticeable
Sometimes called weed
Lost almost
In a field of many blooms
Adding to the beauty
Of the many
But nothing on my own
I take the soil
Whatever’s given me
And make seed
For the future
For whoever follows
That is all
I am a little meadow flower

September 2016

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At the Beach.  Sunny. 

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Milk-bottle white, lobster red
Scantily clad, covered up
Legionnaire hats
Naked tots, entire family clad in bodysuits
And the one family, always one, in heavy shoes, trousers and jumpers
Just in case or taken by surprise?
Sun cream: in blobs, by stripes
There’s no love like a mother with a wet wipe
Two-year-old making a meandering beeline for nothing in particular
The moated castles, the holes, the buried
(Preference of teenagers)
Dogs straining on leads
‘No dogs on the beach’
Scooters everywhere
Child with stabilisers, more zag than zip
Ice cream: in cones, in tubs, on sticks
Why on earth would you give a child that colour ice cream?
Chips, salted and vinegared
The boisterous overcrowding outside the pub
Piled into picnic tables
Armed with plastic cups
Always a raucous one, loud in every way, too much everything
Public toilets, unique smell
Soap’s run out but at least there’s paper
Queues here, there, for everything
Flip flops, bare feet, trails of sand
The sand-encrusted children, writhing sculptures
The saltwater hair
The contortionists attempting a change of costume in public
Dabbling in the scant rock pools
Lifeboat, yacht, canoe, paddle board
No space to throw a ball
Chairs or rugs or sit on the wall
Gulls wheeling overhead
‘Don’t feed the birds’
Wind breaks, pop-up tents
Cricket below the tide line where the sand is firm
The family with everything
Bar the kitchen sink
A puff of wind, mouthful of sand
The mallets come back out
The readers, the snoozers
Teenage love declared by frames per minute
The moaning minnies
The always have something to say
Tempers fraying: heat, hunger, tired
“Don’t throw sand at your brother”
“Don’t even think about putting that on Instagram”
“Because I said so”
Barbecue fume, cigarette reek
Accents from every part
And a few other languages for good measure
Bags from every supermarket
Hardly any cameras
Phone, phone, phone
Phone, tablet, phone
Small child with sandcastle:
“Can I borrow your phone to take a photo Dad?”
The families going home; scruffy, jumbled heaps of belongings
Dragging a reluctant or a howler
Trailing what will later be claimed as all the sand on the beach
(Especially after the third hoovering)
“You’re going in the bath when we get home”
Sand, sea, sunshine, seagull poop

Love Letter to a Home that Never was

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The warm sun on my skin, the stillness of an evening
When the light’s just right, from my balcony
Your rustling grasses, your papery leaves
The thick dense bark, the shiny bark-free

Following the line of often invisible watercourses, the stands of trees
Ochre stoned ground, cascading hills
The twist of a mountain road, the asphalt of a modern highway
Groves across the hills, farms in the valleys

The never-ending whine of the two-wheeled
An impromptu concert of horns
Distant cars on the highway in the warm darkness
The bray of a steadfast donkey

The sun-baked goods of your fields
The bleach and echo of your fish market
The rhythms of your days, the rhythms of your voices
A twang of wire echoing over wood

The colours of your walls, the cool whiteness of your buildings
The rise and fall of tiled roofs, ornately barred windows
Shaded courtyards, splash of flowers, yet more metalwork
The mustiness of an unloved place

Your bumps in the road of history, the poverty
The tangled, narrow streets of your older districts
The ever-taller tower blocks, the houses sprawling out into the once countryside
The boom, the bust

I still love you, in the flashes of memories and in the achings of the night
I still love you, be you dream or fantasy or mere illusion
I will love you, forever and wherever

(written September 2015)

Disordered Eating

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Always clear your plate
Here , have some more
Always say thank you
Don’t you know the trouble I went to?

Eat up, eat up
Otherwise you won’t grow big and strong
There’s children in Africa starving
Or there was once a war, you know
Are you spoilt or ungrateful?

Never waste food
It’s so expensive
Never say no, thank you
What do you mean you don’t like it?

If you’re sad or lonely
Food is medicine for the soul
Or even when you’re ill
Then food will be your cure

Make as big a dish as possible
Well, won’t everyone want seconds?
Ladle it out by the bucket
Well, aren’t you hungry?

Serve up a huge ole slab
Blow everyone away
Is it talent or just impressions?
Never mind, there’s supposedly love in every bite

Love is food-shaped
It is smothering, choked upon
Aren’t we fortunate?
Here have some more

Food brings us together
The backdrop to all the fights
The solution to all the problems
Food solves everything

Untitled

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I’ll…
Will you?
Will you really?
My heart leaps with hope
Don’t I say
Too late
My heart feels not thinks

Heroes Yet Villains

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Once upon a time, when we were young
The heroes were white and pure
Stood apart, tall and strong
When did we raise them?
So they would always be taller?
Did we make them or did they make us?
Their gold glittered at us
Sunlight or human natyre?
But it was only there to fill the cracks
Distraction, lure, deception
Yet how we believed
Maybe we wanted to believe, hoped
Regardless, no matter what
For someone bigger, better, stronger than ourselves
But we worshipped eggshells
Fragile, broken, redundant
Hollow and empty, with nothing to offer
Yet they cast long shadows
We are forever in their thrall

The Nature of Me

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What is me?
A shadow or a being?
Something lost or something to be found?
If at birth I am me
Then once I was me
But now?
Who is me?
If at death I am me
Then I am not yet me
Then what of now?
Is me just a hope or dream?
Something far off
Until a line cuts through
And marks the end?
Something lost or something to be found?
What is me?
And what of now?
I am me
Something shaped by what is lost
Something shaping what is to be found
A someone in the passage of time
Me is a moment in time
And yet an entire lifetime
I am me