I’ll follow where love leads

I heard the thud our cat made on the stair
But when I looked there was no creature there
Can our longing make us hear strange sounds;
Delusions,wish-fulfilment, breaking bounds?

I heard the wrens sing by the kitchen door
At least there is no cat to  make them fewer
I want to make some tea but I feel stuck
I’ll fill the pan, while love my heart strings plucks

For aeons I feel I’m paralysed by grief
The caterpillars gnaw upon  green leaves
I judge myself incompetent,too  slow.
Yet would I judge another, wound with blows?

I  feel half-way between the real, the dream
In reverie I’ll follow where love leads

Love and blindness

Love and structure made  our life secure
Although outside our tent, the gales still blew
Now alone,I fear I can’t endure
Your loving presence made my life secure
Now I stand on air ,supportless,poor

Love and structure made  our life secure
Now I am afraid and pale my hue
Love and  blindness made us feel secure
I forgot ,outside the tent  gales  blew

Love flowed

All we had was the cooker and the bed
I bought some sheets and blankets up the road
The Coop had a  shop, it saved my head
All we had was the cooker and the bed
We  must have had some plates, yes, they were red
Indicating we were not well bred
Cutlery and mugs were gifts bestowed
All we had was much love and a bed
I  made a meal and after that we flowed

Meeting you

I used to see you waiting up the hill
Your shape a cipher,features not yet seen
My heart would smile and I feel tender still

I’d start  to run, while your eyes had their fill
Getting close with kisses like thick cream
I used to see you waiting up the hill

We would get the paper,pay the bill
As love flowed out like water from a stream
My heart would smile and I feel tender still

We walked  the City churches, they were  chill
But beautiful  and complex like a dream
I used to see you waiting up the hill

Now never will you be here,yet I shall
I mistake another person as sun gleams
My heart may smile for I feel tender still

In the night, I woke up with a scream
I felt I too must die, that’s how it seemed
I long to see you waiting up the hill
My heart will smile, I feel  so tender still

 

 

 

Now is lost

The face that was familiar  now is lost
You seem as far away  as is the moon
My heart has paid  for you the savage cost
The face that was so loved, by  now is lost
And my own inner being  is fear- tossed
Though  five  long, weary years have wandered past
I no longer  fear to meet my doom
The face that was familiar  now is lost
Love seems far away,  like a new moon

Blythburgh angels

By Blythburgh church, the cottage was unique
At night the floodlight  made me catch my breath
So beautiful the sight,I could not speak
I felt my soul awaken from its sleep
The Cathedral of the marshes is unique
The  soaring space,the stone, the river deep
The images that fade, the angels’ laugh
By Blythburgh church, the cottage was unique
In  the  dark , the floodlight caught my breath

Fiery air

Autumn time in Essex  where we drove
When farmers burned the stubble of the corn
The earth itself was  fiery  like young love
The smokey air rose like a  cloud  new born

The Kentish  landlocked   cliffs  are  wide and steep
The farmers grow  their grain on land beneath
And there too we  have seen the holy fire
The flames  and smoke arrest me with desire

The earth and soil, the  harvest  we find there
Give me joy  both full of wheat or bare
Why did burning stubble   make me glow?
These images affect the heart’s deep core

Now  fires are banned., they damage our pure air
And I   did not like the murder of the hare

Connections,maps and roads

Roman roads connected in straight lines
The cities they had built in wealthy times
The remains of one  goes past my garden gate
Do ghosts of Roman legions pass at night?

I like to see connections,maps and roads
Others  love  old cities ,walls and moats
My road ran to Lincoln  near the Wash
Migrating birds and swans  go there to rest

Going South, there is the Pilgrim’s Way
Canterbury, Becket,murder, prayer
Julius Caesar, Deal,  the Roman hordes
Boudicea,  and her fighting Lords

Layers of history, meaning,love and death
Still we argue  what should be our path

Maps and roads

London is bewildered by its roads
The Circular, the North,the South, the Codes
The Morse and the Enigma Turing broke
So now we have new bicycles with spokes

Once we had the A to Z in hand
Turn it upside down and you’ll be grand
New technology has made gigantic strides
Carrying us to Eden ,what a ride

The motorways are empty for tonight
God decided we had too much Light
He taught the bare cheeked Moon on Jesus’ mount
To turn the other side when love’s about

I liked to use a compass and a map
But now, my dear, most everything’s on tap
I crouch beneath my sister as she drives
In the dark on the M 25

But if it’s closed, we are completely foxed
We left the old Road Atlas in a box
Along with all my ex’s underpants
And naturally his principles of Kant

We may be in Watford or in Bucks
I often wonder what will rhyme with luck
We may be near St Alban’s, we can’t see
The car ran up the trunk of this oak tree

We rang 999 and they are her
A fire engine filled  with Kentish beer
A ladder for the ladies to climb down
Now they are just women on the town

London won’t exist ,destroyed by cars
Angry men who cannot find a bar

No Summer Dresses

Button Detailed Midi Cardigan Image 1 of 4

Women can’t wear frocks and aprons now
We have to look like men  but well endowed
No man would wear a cardigan so long
Behind his wardrobe it would  soon be flung

Shorts are hot in summer, I shall sigh
Why do women have to have a fly?
If you  need to pee  while in a wood
A skirt  provides some cover  for the flood

I’d like a dress like mother used to wear.
As we walked to Grandad’s, she had flair
She knitted  lacy jumpers for  the heat
Even knitted  wool socks for my  feet

We  look like alien creatures  from elsewhere
I’m going to wear my sundress, I don’t care.

Holy heart’s affection,beating pulse

One single tear   expresses  love and loss
Dramatic storms  excess may make folk pause
Who  will notice  one tear and its  cost?

A little stone near water may grow moss
But only mountains bring a sense of awe
One single tear   expresses  love and loss

Grief  must not wallowed in, like  baths
Philosophers not hurt  their minds   uncaused
Who  then will  observe   the tear,  the  cost?

To an ant, a pebble is quite gross
To a widow, death has hungry jaws
One single tear  may   show how she is lost

The entire self is  tear-filled  like  a marsh
We weep  till love itself becomes remorse
Let  one tear out and hide its  anguished cost

The heart’s affections use  poetic laws
Holy  circulation,  blood that draws
One single tear  falls down like bladed grass
Who  will care for  this tear, bear  its  cost?

 

 

 

 

Heart and art

Limestone’s softness lets its cracks appear
Wildflowers,daisies,foxgloves love to grow
While little rivers  to the South Tyne veer

Alston on the hill  to me is dear
The main street in the winter’s under snow
Limestone’s softness lets its cracks appear

Granite hard as marble seems to jeer
Limestone  lets the seeds and grass stay,
While little rivers  to the South Tyne veer

The savage Pennines can cause panic fear
Their shadow in the sun, a fearsome layer
Limestone’s softness lets its cracks appear

Do we shift our vision far and near?
The panorama  of the Lakes is fair
The little rivers  to the South Tyne veer

Limestone,like a  woman, let’s love grow
Thus it is creative ,heart and Art
Limestone’s softness lets  broad cracks appear
Thus  streams, well  filled with seeds, are made home there

 

 

 

 

One tear

A silver tear rolled lonely as sliced moon
Down my pallid cheek  and wet my lip
Your loss turned me to sadness and damp gloom

My future  seemed, not promising, but doomed
The icy nails of death gave me a nip
A little tear rolled lonely as lost moons

Yet, in my mind, I heard L Cohen’s tunes
“There ain’t no cure for love” on this our trip
Your loss turned me to sadness ,clouds of gloom

Yet soft, deep darkness  need not lead to doom
Come,I’ll take a lover, board a ship
A starry tear rolled lonely as   new moon

I will  love,I ‘ll seek  for new  hope soon
Will I descend to stealing from a skip?
Your loss sent me to sadness like a room

I  need no LSD to take a trip
My open senses give me what I miss
A silver tear rolled lonely as cruel moon
Your loss turned me to beauty,life resumes

 

 

In honour of Paul Tillich

Paul Tillich gave our spirit proper place.

He showed us courage as a  space to dwell.

He wrote for us and left us with   his  grace

With hope he might  well speak and he might tell.

So many people ignored Fascist speech

And lived with mind cut off from  their own soul

With pen in hand he wrote his soul to reach

And touch us as we strive towards the whole.

Expelled from his own country, he wrote on

Continuing during  tortuous war long years

He lived, he loved ,he wrote, he died and then

His books continue to dispatch our fears.

For many men have lived and have destroyed.
 Tillich showed  us how to face the  void

 

The loss of dignity, the face unread

His face was black, he fell against my breast
Dying in an armchair by his bed
While nurses gossiped,he was  alone left

The  doctor said it would be for the best
The rehab is not meant for those  near death
His face was black, he fell against my breast

I asked him,dearest, do you feel depressed?
He nodded  with a gravity like lead
While nurses gossiped,he was lonely left

Then I realised   my  wifely task
I was even asked to lift him to his bed
No longer  as my bridegroom at the feast

The loss of dignity, the face unread
The  blindness of the staff,  the broken head
His face was black, he fell against my breast
While nurses gossiped,he was fading fast

 

 

My first attempt: wind and eye

An ancient one roomed building was  once home
Lit and warmed by fire,heat upward flowed
The smoke escaped  through one small  hole or “eye”
The winter wind  would fight to get inside.

Like a human eye, it was a breach
The bones of head and face allow this reach
We must see out and not live all within
Wolves, those metaphors. might  bite our skin

Enclosed spaces need  selected gaps
Few would enjoy choking in a trap.
We need a way to breath, to see, to touch
Sophisticated means, this eye  to watch

Sitting round the fire we hear  Wind howl
Through the eye, we see the moon,our jewel

 

Entertainment,sadism, power

On a hilltop not so far from Rhyl
Mother took us to the Zoo as Mothers will
The wind was strong and cold, the air was harsh
Although it was in August, not in March

Vultures  in enclosures   chained by leg
Like convicts in a prison   full of dread
When they vainly  tried to  get away
I felt their faith and hope dismayed

Who had chosen birds like these to show?
Even God himself would never know
Entertainment,sadism, power
Making people pay  and  children cower

When we got back  to the station I was sick
What cruel minds  played such a trick?

I dream into your mind

I wish I were at Whitby by your side
From the Abbey Steps  we saw the.whole
The sound of gulls aswirling round our minds

The atmosphere of Yorkshire  blunt and kind
Salty  air,the North Sea,winds that groan
I wish I were at Whitby by your side

See the children taking donkey rides
The fishermen look   anxious , happy, worn,
The sound of gulls  is  swirling round my mind

From Saltburn,Staithes to Bempton bold cliffs   rise 
Then Bridlingon where Hockney was a boy
I wish I were at  any by your side

The two weeks break seemed long when we arrived
Now all my past seems like an old map torn
The sound of gulls  is   ccalling you to mind

To be in Whitby and to be alone
The pie shop’s open yet I feel forlorn
 I wish we were at Whitby side by side
The sun and air, I dream into your mind

 

Like an oboe singing as I pray

Precisely when we fell in love’s unclear
I knew your humour and  your eager ways
I  can’t imagine  when you were not dear

The deeper is the love, the more the fear
That one  must go, the other one must  stay
Exactly when we fell in love’s unclear

All alone, it is your voice I hear
Like an oboe singing as I pray
I  can’t imagine  when you were not dear

I see you in the room I know you’re here
I must not look, or I shall have to pay
Exactly when we fell in love’s unclear

I see your head  lean onto mine so near
From my reverie I must not stray
I  can’t imagine  when you were not dear

As we ambled, wandered on  our way
I did not know the ending of our Play
Precisely when we fell in love’s unclear
From this world’s creation, you were dear

 

 

Evolution, accident, who cares?

The Enlightment   brought  error and despair
Science can’t give  a meaning to our lives
In two World Wars we seem to make that clear

Satan looked out  puzzled from his  lair
The evil done by men was a surprise
The Enlightment   brought  error and despair

The fabric of the world  is ripped and torn
The war between the wealthy never dies
In two World Wars we seem to make that clear

Evolution, accident, who cares
With the  pill ,no woman  can deny
The Enlightment   brought  error and despair

Now we shop while wearing our nightmares
Haunted faces lifted  with no pride
In two World Wars we seem to  have that clear

Jesus in his wooden tower sighs
Almost human, he has turned away
The Enlightment   brought  error and despair
After two World Wars what else is clear?