An update, a poem – and au revoir

Hello to all my dear blogging friends. I have decided the time has come for me to take a break from blog land. I have been blogging full on for over four years and it’s time for a break.

There are two main reasons for this. First, I feel somewhat in a rut in my daily life and need a change of direction. I have a host of novels waiting to be read on my kindle and a bookcase full of excellent poetry books to read. There are also some wonderful day time radio programmes on radio 4 here in the UK and I miss so many of them; this needs to be rectified. I will, of course, still be attending my great writing group on Fridays and rising to the poetic challenges. And I am in need of getting out of the house more whenever possible.

The second reason is that very soon work will begin on our home to install a downstairs bathroom for me with disabled facilities. In order to do this an internal wall will have to be knocked through and an extension erected at the back of the house. As you can imagine this is a huge project and is going to need much thought. planning and there will be mess!!

Thank you all for your wonderful consistent support and encouragement, without which my blog wouldn’t have survived. I will still pop into WordPress now and again to read some of your work when I can. And I will be back!

So the following poem will be my last post for a while. As you know, most of my poems are born from personal experience but the following one is not a personal one in any way at all; it is merely a situation I chose to practice writing a Petrarchan sonnet, my very first attempt!

Beautifully Broken

They promised each to other from the start,
a pledge of love so readily endowed.
Yet still they fell, and she keeps wondering how
it seemed so simple then to break a heart;

to scatter hurt and leave it there to smart
and shatter every promise, all the vows
they made and broke so easily somehow;
the sacred ones to say they’d never part.

But real love does not succumb to fear;
it holds fast; a silken thread upon a web
as wisdom weaves its way along the years

and sews each tattered line of word and deed.
Love is all there is, and deepened will not ebb,
as brokenness sheds light, then disappears.

Healing Moment

I am sitting on the kitchen floor;
I have fallen again.
You are oblivious,
upstairs in the shower
singing your heart out.

The dog walks over to me,
covers me from head to toe
in healing spit;
I stroke his head,
turn my thoughts and

ask if he remembers when
we used to run in the field,
how he carried sticks far too wide to
fit through the gap in the hedge
so we walked the long way round.
The days I threw the ball and
he sat there looking at me,
embarrassed, it seemed,
that I could do something so silly.
His soft paw prints on frosted grass,
my footprints, solid, healthy, firm.

We have come a long way together
over the years, the dog and I;
friendship, understanding, trust, love,
and healing –
yes, much healing.

Fragrant Life

Fragrant Life – Villanelle

How sweet the fragrance of my life today
The perfumed past comes drifting clearly by
Much sweeter as the moments fly away

Your skin upon the grass that summer’s day
The scent of love-filled air and you nearby
How sweet the fragrance of my life today

Wild roses and petunia seemed to pray
Raised aromatic psalms towards the sky
Much sweeter as the moments fell away

And honeysuckle vines did gently sway
As you gazed deeply then into my eyes
How sweet the fragrance of my life today

Those heady lilac days were here to stay
We drank our fill, our senses rising high
Much sweeter as the moments seeped away

Now the scent of memories comes to play
Aromas I will cling to till I die
How sweet the fragrance of my life today
More haunting as the years slip faraway.

The Christmas Gift

For the girl who has everything!
he says.
She looks at him, frowns,
unties the frayed festive ribbon
and peels away crinkled brown paper.
The box is old, hardly used,
an heirloom, perhaps;
inside, two silver napkin rings
a little tarnished,
nestling in blue satin.
But I don’t have everything;
I don’t have anything.
You have a warm heart, he says.
He rolls up layers of paper towels,
slots them deftly through the rings;
she opens a can of soup.


This poem was written as the result of a prompt
in the writing group I attend weekly.
The prompt was the box in the photograph below





Solomon’s Light

Who cares
about avoiding cliché?
Your presence is like
a magic patch of sunshine
on grey November days.
When your smile
peeps round the door
there is a bright light and
my fears know that for now
they are beaten;
you are the breath of fresh air
that I crave.

And today
when you toddled
full length of the room,
successfully for the first time,
bearing a gift especially for me –
two stickle bricks in a pan –
I knew that this was the start
of something big.

November 2014 004

Phoebe and Me


As you nestle cosily,
your contented purr
a soothing massage on my lap,
I recall the day I brought you home.

I had driven, over the limit,
to see a friend after her desperate
call for help; we were two of a kind,
lost in a foreign hostile land
of drunken despair.

I found her lying on a bed
surrounded by a swarm of
furry squeaking babies
like confused bees
who had lost their map.

You stumbled over to me at the
edge of the bed, so small and vulnerable,
eyes like tiny fallen stars
as though pleading
but you didn’t know why.
I held you in one cupped hand,
stroked your innocent head with the other
and in a dolorous drunken daze
I fell in love.

Twelve years of contented sobriety later,
I am still in love with you.

My friend died.


I take up my usual place on the sofa
with a cup of coffee;
your eyes light up,
bigger and brighter
than a Supermoon
because you now have my full attention.
You grab a baby walker;
of course you are no longer a baby
but it makes the best noise for
a host of different vehicles.
You roar past me
from one room to another
Look Im a fire engine!
Fires are rapidly extinguished
with amazing sound effects
involving spit.
Next time you appear
the baby walker is a lawn mower;
you tell me not to worry,
you wont really cut the floor
because that would be silly.
A police car, excavator and
steam roller all take their turns
in your own mini theatre
of imagination
until you begin to slow down,
rub your eyes and sit next to me
with teddy and a book.
What are you now? I ask.
Theodore, you say
as you snuggle close.

Love and a Jedi Interceptor

“It’s not called a Something Interceptor,
it’s a Jedi Interceptor!”.
He laughed,
shaking his five year old head
at my bewilderment of
all things Star Wars.

Whatever its name,
it is the reason
we sat together on the sofa
for the whole weekend
apart from trips out here and there.
I was given the privileged position
of Lightsaber Holder;
I learned how R2D2 was built,
how Anekin once fell into lava
and lost all his hair
(thankfully not forever).

But what I learned most
was how the love of a child
is set apart from any other,
its unconditional quality,
its gritty honesty,
its patience.
I think Star Wars movies
could well find their way
onto my bucket list;
of course I would have to
watch them with him.

Dog Diary – Jack (Golden “Retriever”) ***

I’ve been suffering from January blues so I thought I would cheer myself up by writing something lighthearted. So here it is – and it’s all true!! 🙂

I feel the need to talk about something
I am asked to do.
It’s about why she asks me to sit
before I am given a treat;                   `
it’s not like a biscuit can spill
and surely this particular eating position
makes no difference to a dog’s digestive tract.
It must be so that she feels in charge,
in control of all issues dog related.
I’m okay with it though,
I rather like her to be in charge;
she is the leader of the pack,
except when I want left-over cat food,
then she is definitely not in charge.
There are some things in life that
one simply needs and
cat food hovers near the top of the list.
What’s the harm in a few daily morsels,
although the ensuing battle every time
to stop me is something Im puzzled by –
she never wins.
Does she not recall that I eat poo,
preferably my own
and that if I am desperate
I will even try cat poo.
I watch the felines from the window,
make a mental note of position and
have a snack later in the day.
I don’t think she has a clue that
the other day I ate half a dead rabbit
while running in the field.
Maybe that’s why I was
violently sick in the afternoon;
it felt like the end of everything.
But it was worth every agonising pain
because the day after I got scrambled eggs.
Life here is definitely good
despite all the odd things that she does,
and there are many.
I really do love her however peculiar she may be
and what is even more wonderful
is that I know she really loves me too.

*** I don’t seem to be able to do this; perhaps I need therapy.



A teddy so loved he is worn
till his threads are all bare and torn.
He is forty years old,
many stories told
and some would leave you forlorn,

but he is happy right here on the chair,
a new generation to share,
to play with, talk to, cuddle and feel
and to let him know he’s no toy, but real.


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