Tanka: Sunset

Photo©Aaron Logan


Gold tinted, the shores

washed in the colours of love.

Ebbed now, that high tide,

night falls and there is no moon

to silver your parting steps.


Poetry challenge #35: Pebbles

I thought I’d return to the pantoum for this one. The instructions are set out clearly in shadow poetry.

I’ve added a few words you might like to use, but don’t feel obliged. I have to say that since I forgot all about the words when I came to write the poem!

Here’s the pic, the word suggestions, my pantoum is below, and remember you have a whole week to write your pantoum (or other form if you don’t get on with pantoums) and post the link in the comments.

Have fun!

Bright, smooth, shore, blue, reflecting


The strand is strewn with sunlight,

Sea-polished gems of stone,

Reflecting sun and moonlight,

The only treasure she will own.


Sea-polished gems of stone,

The colours of the deeps,

The only treasure she will own,

From the halls where the Selkie weeps.


The colours of the deeps,

Matched by the clouded sky,

From the halls where the Selkie weeps,

For a love that will never die.


Matched by the clouded sky,

White foam sighs on the shore,

For a love that will never die,

She dives and is seen no more.


White foam sighs on the shore,

Reflecting sun and moonlight,

She dives and is seen no more,

The strand is strewn with sunlight.

Flash Fiction: Not drowning

My flash fiction story in response to Sacha Black’s prompt. Time to get back to an old theme, I think.

Painting ©Ricardo Asensio



He didn’t know she was watching him. She’d have died if he’d turned and seen how her eyes were running all over his swimmer’s body, lapping at the muscles sliding beneath his white skin like a cat at a saucer of milk. He raised his arms, flexed his knees and plunged, powerful and graceful as a big cat, a cat with no fear of water. The waves broke and closed over his head, his white body sliding beneath the green with scarcely a splash.

She let out her breath slowly; afraid the slight ripple of the air might dispel the magic. She watched the ocean, the oil-smooth surface, for his reappearance. The shouts and laughter of the other bathers on the family beach further along the coast barely reached her consciousness. Rocks. A sliver, a crescent moon of silver sand. Ocean. And him, the boy with a shock of jet black hair and skin white as milk, swimming through the darkness, easy as a seal.

The breeze lifted a lock of her hair and flipped it into her eyes. She shook it back and peered intently at the empty waves. She was holding her breath again, and anxiety nestled in the pit of her stomach. The sun had shifted, she was sure. How long was it? Far too long. He must have had an accident, a malaise. She should get help.

She leapt to her feet, scattering sand; ran to the water’s edge. Foam fizzed about her toes. She raised a hand to shield the sun from her eyes and scanned the water, further and further, impossibly far out towards the shining horizon. Breath came short and sharp, in little staccato bursts. She saw him at last, far, far away, a round black point amid the wave glitter. Her heart leapt and settled back with relief, pounding in her ears. But the bobbing head was joined by another, and another. Not human then. Seals.

She ran along the strand, slipping on half-concealed rocks, splashing through the shallow water, yelling when she was within earshot of the coast guard.

“Up at the cove, you say? A black-headed boy, skin the colour of new milk?” The coastguard shook his head. “He’ll not be back before morning.”


“Don’t you worry about him. He’s safe where he is.”


In bewilderment, she watched as the seals played, rolling and diving, and the sun sank slow and red. She half-knew what the coast guard meant. Knew what she wanted to understand at least. The breeze blew colder now and whined about the rocks with a different voice. She shivered in her cotton jumper, but she would wait until the morning. Just to see, to know for sure.

Haiku sequence: Beach at night

Haiku sequence, my contribution to a twitter exchange with Alfred, @the_release_101

Painting ©Fernando de Gorocica


Dimple in wet sand

wave-washed sun-baked bone-white shell

sings songs of the sea.


Furrows filled with tears

sunset pours its bloody light

earth sighs as night falls


And in the darkness

Gentle, moonlit, pain slips

between the night stars.


To sleep, dream, perhaps,

rocked on the dark midnight waves

beneath silent stars.


I was looking for a picture of pebbles in a stream to illustrate a poem and found this beauty instead. Click on the picture for the full, glorious effect.


The sea has so many treasures,
Tossed carelessly on the shore,
Where we lie
High on the silver sand,
Dreaming of gold
And the electric dazzle
Of city lights.
A thousand hues,
Sun-caught glitter,
A precious pavement,
Beneath our feet,
We walk,
Eyes on the horizon,
Marvelling at the blue,
Or closed,
To bask in the fiery sun,
Until the waves wash
Reclaim their treasure,
To display before other,

Poems for tourists


Sunbathers on a beach
slumber, oiled and indifferent
to the grandiose history of a grain of sand
or the dark, unsoundable depths
of the waves’ home.

Destroying the magic

Footsteps in the wilderness
no matter how quiet
make the wilderness


I feel no need to touch the pyramids
to see my footprints in desert sand
or stalk a tiger with native guide
or be the first to leave a plastic bag
in a virgin forest.


Floating hotel squats
obstructing the riverfront
spewing its load of credit cards
into the waiting boutiques.

New camera

Better to watch and observe
than snap and snap and snap.