Saturday, 29 October 2011


Scattered around this landscape, like boulders,
Spat out by some glacial flow, these stoney losses
Litter the ground which has been crossed to arrive
At "Here". Teetering up near the ridgeline,
Huge rocks, poised to fall. Sisyphus, endlessly
Rolling his boulder back to the top of the hill.
Such futile pushing. I feel the fear rising, as I
Imagine those huge lumps of rock, crashing and tumbling,
Imagine the carnage they will leave in their wake.
And when they land, what's left? A barren field of stones.

Look again behind you. Each piece of rock distinctive,
Unique. Feel the weight of pushing those boulders,
Year after year after year. What if Sisyphus could
Simply walk away? Leave the stone where it sits,
Rooted by gravity? Walk, slowly at first, towards
Something new. Scared of the sudden weightlessness
Of his existence, he's tempted to walk back, to start
Once more that endless, futile pushing. Comfort
Of the familiar. Leave this field of stones. Let them
Fall where they will. Live without the weight.

Friday, 28 October 2011


Quicksilver river streaming past.
White flames shooting skyward.
Linked, this mercurial stream and
The flames, earth and unearthly fire.
Earth running like water. Fire
Soaring upwards to air.
FOUR elements, then.
Yet it's the colours that hold me.
Greysilver. Ethereal white. Utterly
Different. Circling each other.
Strangely connected. These two.

Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Holy Losing

Becoming a word

A warning

A warming

A morning

A dawning

A voice rising

Silently inside


All that I possess
All that I call "mine"
I relinquish now.

Take a vow
And trust
This moment.

After this moment
The next moment -
Or not.

Decided elsewhere
By an unseen
And greater power

Sunday, 23 October 2011

Saturday, 22 October 2011

These Selves

Circling like planets within this existence,
An endless universe of selves. Floating and
Circling, sometimes in shadow, sometimes in
Full light. Full sight.

Tiny, moon self, closest by. Surges of mood, like
Tides. Beyond, galaxies of selves. Venus, Mars,
Jupiter, Saturn - even a milky way. Universe
Of self, stretching in all directions. Endless,
Infinite, unbounded.

Now look at today's troubles. Centred on this
Tiny spot on a tiny planet, surrounded by all
Infinity. Self is bigger than this. Vast.
Immeasurable. Close your eyes. See infinity. Grasp
Your own hand, and leap.

You think this is hard?

You think this is hard, girl? I'll tell you what's hard.
It's hard, trading your fur coat, the only valuable thing you were allowed to bring,
For a handful of eggs, through the barred window of the cattle truck. It's hard,
Living in a small hut, in a small village, thousands of miles from home, out on
The steppes. It's hard, picking cotton all day, and fighting a losing battle with
Bed bugs all night. It's hard, seeing your father taken away for questioning,
Seeing him come home, and seeing him die days later, kidneys destroyed.
It's hard waking in the cold dawn, trudging from hut to hut, collecting one cow
Here, one cow there; saddling up the horse and riding out with the cattle onto
The steppe; spending the whole day out there, furtively stealing a drink of warm
Milk to assuage the gnawing hunger, hoping no one notices the fall in yield.
It's hard doing that when you're nine years old. It's hard being hungry all day and
Hungry all night. It's hard meeting a dog with a loaf in its mouth, a steaming,
Stolen loaf. Fighting the dog and taking the bread. Resisting the need to
Devour it there, bringing it home instead for your nine year old son. It's hard,
Seeing your mother for the last time, at the far end of a corridor, isolated
in the typhus ward. Holding the ends of her shawl, waving a hand. It's hard
Coming back the next day to find out she's dead. It's hard, having your tonsils
Removed on a bench in siberia, a bottle of vodka your anaesthetic. Its hard
Cutting your finger off, and sewing it back on yourself, crooked, as your mother
Trudges back across the frozen wastes, walking miles in the dark. It's hard,
Finding kindling, small sticks and reeds, tied in a bundle on your back, your feet
Frozen, all feeling disappeared. It's hard, living in a woodshed, catching cats in
Sacks for the villagers; a raw cat's head tossed to you to eat in return. It's hard
Sleeping for two days next to your brother who's dead - you're too young to know,
So you just swat away the flies that swarm around his eyes, hour after hour. It's
Hard, when finally, the villagers take him away from you, just you and your sister left.
It's hard when you steal a chicken, and the terror of being caught and what they will
Do to you makes you plunge your arms, holding the chicken, into a pot of boiling water.
It's hard, crossing the sea in unsuitable boats, orphans, all lousy and starving.
It's hard, landing on a harsh beach, living in quarantine, not knowing who will
Take you or where you will go. It's hard being beaten for sneezing and wasting
The medicine, because there's no more. It's hard being punished when one boy
Wets the bed, and all of you have no breakfast. It's hard having tapeworm, and
No medication, parasites living inside you and coming out through your skin.
It's hard being really alone. It's hard being really without. You think THIS
Is hard, girl? This is a feather bed.

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Crazy Stars

Crazy stars, falling, falling,
Crazy stars all around; shouting
And calling "We're here! We're here."

Poor lost stars, gathered in a pile.
All shine and glitter, no substance.
Star shower. Star burst.

Star fall. Star cursed.

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Mysterious place

Mysterious place, drawing me. No rhyme nor reason to explain why
This place feels sacred, where that one does not. Eucalyptus trees
Lining the dirt track leading to the door. Scattered leaves strew
The road. Smell of eucalyptus in the air. Heat rises all around,
Still, it's cool in your interior, cool and fresh and alive. I want
To stay and get to know these spaces. I want to wake to the absence
Of sound. Only small rustles of birds at the water's edge.

Sunday, 16 October 2011

No Straight Lines

Listen to these waves, gentle, rolling waves, one follows another, follows another.
Breeze coming from the right, warm breeze, sweet breeze, sun shining, October warmth.
Family of three at the edge of the water, "Daddy's got ya", safe to fall. Two boys,
Racing and tugging, legs wet to the knees. Light voices behind as people arrive,
Cross the railway and walk the pebble stretch to the water's edge. No hard edges,
No straight lines, only the line of the horizon. When you look more carefully,
Even that's not a line, its a curve. Listen to the world. Sea. Wind. Voices.
Buzz of an insect flying by. Listen to the interior world.
What waves and winds are there?

A whole world, just doing what worlds do. No straight lines.
Follow the curves, sweeping from right to left.
Little bubbling, foaming sounds at the water's edge.

Look Again

Take a small piece of something sticky. Roll it around your life. Roll it around and see what you pick up. What's there to be grateful for. Roll it around some more. Watch this ball of entwined gratitudes grow. See how warm and tender it feels to hold this sticky ball in your hands.

Friday, 14 October 2011

Strange Dance

Sunset in Faro

Sunset on that dream of a life, sweet happy dream, where two people come together to create something whole. Wrote about it, dreamed about it, bent the truth into some aproximation of it. Oh the iron hoops I used to hold that bent truth out of shape. Tell me now, as I watch this setting sun; bright red circle sinking fast into a blue line of distance. Tell me where that sculpted dream goes, as it sinks beyond the horizon. We imagine a life. Sometimes we have to un-imagine it. I like to think that somewhere, there in a bright happy space beyond the horizon, a dream life continues, pure, sweet. Another me lives another life. The world, soft and yielding, holding us there. Meanwhile, darkness falls fast, October darkness. Daylight disappears. I thought I'd done with this. Drive down the causeway, sunset behind me, a flight beckons. Flying towards a more real version of the truth. Heart aching for all that is lost.

Thursday, 13 October 2011

Madness, really

It was madness, really, believing any of it was mine.
We come into this world naked, owning only our breath.
If we are lucky, there's a loving pair of arms, waiting
To hold us, and a soft breast to nuzzle.
If we're unlucky, - there's not. The fortunate
Infant, held and suckled, believes the arms and breast
Are his. Faces a hard transition to toddlerhood and
Learning the truth, that they're not. So, now,
This adult transition. Grasping the fullness of this truth:
That nothing given to us is ours for keeps. In the blink
Of an eye, it can be gone. Another blink -
Something new appears, unimagined. Between the blinks,
A hollow space. If we are wise, we sit still in the space,
Sit and watch our breath. Sit quietly, and breathe.
This hollow space. This hallowed space. Breathe in. Breathe out.
The breath we entered with.

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Something Bigger


Sheltering under your branches,
A home, a family, yin and yang,
Made whole under this branching
Benificence. A whole that can
Hold small lives, until they
Grow big. Tree of life. Shelter.
Food. Branches dripping
With unconditional love.

Sunday, 9 October 2011



Something is stuck. It traps a nerve, and pain shoots, twisted and twisting.

An old dog limps. Something is swollen and wrong.

Something is young. It runs and jumps and looks on curiously, even as these words form.

Clinging on to this heavy load, taking the first steps from here to there.

Saturday, 8 October 2011

Old Clothes

Some children cannot bear the feel of new clothes.
They like things that are old, cotton, much washed,
Left soft and accommodating to their individual contours.
I'm looking for a day that feels like those old clothes.
I don't want to feel, today, the rub of a collar on my neck.
Don't want to feel the scratchy folds of new cloth.
I want the day to enfold me, and hold me in comfortable
Softness. I want to snuggle against its folds,
I want to bury my nose in soft cloth and a smell
As familiar as my own skin. I want this day
To cosset me, not bind me. To give me space
To move freely, and also keep me warm.
I don't want the surprise of bright colours today.
Washed out, faded tones, maybe even a little frayed,
Setting a backdrop for this Saturn's Day.
Enfold me now, this day, like old clothes do.

Thursday, 6 October 2011


The puppy born here, in our garden,
A grown dog now. Golden Sandy. Big Sandy.
Always such a big strong dog. So big,
You used to knock the little children over,
In your excitement. A backdrop of
Faithfulness in our lives. Your body
A wag, and a pair of soulfull eyes.
Now your body is reaching the end of
Its time on this earth. Nine years old,
Only. We thought you had at least four
Good years left. Your decline so rapid,
The lumps appearing everywhere. You are
Our dog, and I know that shortly you will
Be no more. I've moved your bed into
My room, and now at 4am I hear you snoring.
You always snored. Could wake the dead
With your snoring. But you're sleeping peacefully,
And for that I'm glad. I knew, when you got so needy for company,
That something wasn't right. You knew too.
Old dog. Bounding along and now your bound has become
A limp. I hope you are dreaming of bounding.

Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Bring It On

You promised a light at the window.
You promised to guide me back home.
Somewhere, I know there's a window,
A candle still burning alone.

Been falling and falling for so long,
Just waiting to land with a thud.
Can't just keep on falling for ever,
Keep waiting to hit the hard ground.

Wake up in the morning, a shout rises.
Shout out at the world "BRING IT ON".
I'm here, good or bad, hard or easy.
I'll light my own candle for now.

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Green edge

............just when the dam needed to burst, wanted to burst, HAD to burst -

the pressure of water subsided

Monday, 3 October 2011

Bad Harvest

.....the peasant farmer farming his subsisdence crops. Crop fails. Calamity. No harvest, no food, no life.

.....this western world tending its money crop.......crop failing, shoots wither and shrivel as we watch.

.....a made up set of rules we created and run our lives by. Nothing real, no substance. much panic, desperation, suicide, broken lives. We've learnt the rules by heart.

.....and so the world turns, and turns again. Breathe in, breathe out, drink tea.

.....this is not the bottom. This is nowhere near the bottom. A bad harvest though.

We reap what we sow.

Sunday, 2 October 2011

It's ok to fall apart

If you are tired of holding it all together, it's ok to fall apart. Maybe when we pick up the pieces and put them back together, something new and wonderful will emerge.

Saturday, 1 October 2011