Tis the season, so here’s a festive decoration from outside the barn door
and one from inside the barn door in the kitchen
House hunkers down. The folk that pad and trot around its walls the night have gone. Only the birds, ever-hungry, ever-cheerful chatter, fluttering from tree to tree and into the porch after seed and other necessities. A deer family ambles through the willows by the stream. Dawn sun streams gold, a glimpse of heaven before its flow slows and ceases. Cloud thickens.
days slip deeper
into the heart of the cold
east wind sighs winter
I have two daughters in Italy at the moment, one in Milan, the other in Naples. The one in Naples will be back soon, the other will be back for Christmas, but perhaps not to stay. I haven’t felt so happy in ages.
if you take your eyes off it,
just for a moment,
takes wing, flies, like nestlings,
leaves on jet plane or some other form of locomotion,
taking memories of the closeness,
the warm breath of home,
arms enfolding, hands holding,
and suddenly, a shared part of the world
is a shade cooler, a place in the nest
half-empty, where it once throbbed with young
another night of rocking stars
and south wind
broken branches too dry to bend
the supple sap retreated to the core
bracing roots dug deep to face another sun
Air too grey
between ditch and tree bough,
gone the sun.
We hear the rushing tide,
the dark night roaring that swallows the stars
and we shut our ears to winter’s song.
Through rain and streamwater
Danu’s children watch
with cold misty blue eyes
a summer world
of kestrels’ wings.
The world shrinks,
colour of water,
blossom chased into the past
like empty husks in the icy steppes.
I close my eyes, my ears, the shutters tight,
that the lilting wind melody
lull to sleep
the children of the mist,
and, their laughter ending,
the tide turn its ebb into the dark
to flow bright with summer kestrels’ wings
for we who cower beneath mortal skies.
I don’t usually bother the Oracle in the week, but thoughts were getting grim and gloomy and something prompted me to see if she had anything to offer me. I’m glad I asked.
did you see its water beauty
winding in its bed towards the sea?
Beneath a misty sky,
blue dream ships sail
with rain music in their wings.
One day, I will follow,
singing sun and moon songs.
I listen to the waking voices
falling from the perfumed sky,
echoed by trees and wet grass.
In the wild eyes of the stars,
flying in the night ocean,
the fading fire of their slow sailing home.
I am tired of writing the same words,
feeling the same pain,
stifling the same tears,
hands raised to my face,
in a gesture of despair,
again and again.
Who am I?
What does my sorrow matter?
Not a jot in the sands of time,
the starred and clouded sky,
in your fossilised hearts.
But grains of sand make mountains,
the sky our rocking cradle,
and your hearts will shatter
beneath the great hammer of history,
if enough stars and grains of sand
join to form the hands
to wield it,
and one day,
Words shoot across the wind like lovers’ darts,
so many left to say, unsaid,
while in the sky the stars look down on empty worlds
and listen to the echo of a song.
This turning planet once was blue,
turning grey as ashes fall;
there is nothing we can do,
and nothing will ever be the same again.
Listen for the rhythm in the air,
the beating wings of ghostly swans,
carrying the soul of music to the stars
I wish, I wish, I wish,
the star, the flying horse, the dancing diamond,
had not shrunk to a simple pinprick of light,
the rainbow dreams grown monochrome,
a mist of rain against black cliffs.
I wish the children had not grown to people
with no need of a hand to hold,
distant as a special field beneath a lark-filled sky,
elusive as rain on black cliffs.