On the edge of wakefulness

Today’s Daily Post prompt is: sing


On the edge of wakefulness,

Clutching at fading dreams,

When the gentle night takes back

The searing memories,

Hot-blooded, red and violet,

From these empty hands,

The first hesitant notes of song,

From the blackbird in the hedge,

Coax and mend the rawness and the pain

With the balm of beauty,

Soft as falling rain.



In this dark time of the year,

When buds still sleep on rain-black boughs,

And famine stalks the winter-weary woods,

Stealthy as fox tread, quick as the kestrel,

I do not bend my head in sorrow or in shame,

Or shake green boughs to ward off last year’s ghosts.

I watch the blackbird settled on her nest,

Listen to the cloud-grey turtle dove,

Murm’ring softly to his lifetime’s love,

And make a promise to this burgeoning and blossoming,

To live what I have left of sun and showers,

With as much unselfish passion,

As these feather soft, fur trembling, gentle ones,

My precious siblings.

On this morning

Photo ©Ttnbangla


As winter fades,

Receding into the darkness of space,

The stars blink coldly,

Memories of icy mornings.

Kite drifts north,

Following the trail of carrion

Dropped by spring tides,

Fighting the gulls

For choice morsels.

Into the grey light of morning,

Blustery with cloud and cold spattered rain,

Songbirds spill their glorious music,

As if there is no war and want,

While beneath the alders,

Blackbird picks busily

Through the debris

Of a million shattered dreams.

In the garden plot

The Secret Keeper’s five words prompt this week:


A nice set of words that tripped off the fingers like spring chicks.

Photo © Gegik

In the garden plot that quakes with stirring life,

A green spark ignites the flourishing,

The quaking, stirring breaking of bounds.

Bonds of winter snap and fray,

In the cloudy light of day, with rain in the air,

Snow on the hills,

And a blackbird that spies a worm,

Worth its weight in blackbird gold,

Of spring sunshine.

She waits in winter’s garden


She waits in winter’s garden,

Where the roses used to cling,

No blossom on the hawthorn,

No blackbird here to sing.

The gold upon her finger,

Is cold as bitter dawn,

But she’ll wait while dusk light lingers,

And the snow falls on the thorn.

She’ll wait for night to claim her,

When the stars rise in the sky,

She’ll wait though roses perish,

And the lonely blackbird die.



Beneath the trees, where the vixen burrows,

Kicking rime from cold-crisped leaves,

Blackbird scratches tiny furrows,

Patterns in the earth, he weaves.

Feathers ruffled by northwind sighing,

He digs for scarce, elusive grubs,

Cocks his head at the old year’s dying,

Ignores the tumbling roistering cubs.

Scratching, hunting, seasons turning,

Snowclouds billow where the grey geese fly,

In the sky a black sun burning,

Snowflakes drift where spring seeds lie.

And far away, where the northwind mutters,

Where white bears stalk the fat-sleek seal,

The ocean rolls, the white gull flutters,

Round and round the eternal wheel.

In the early, early morning

Painting by Frank Weston Benson

In the early, early morning, you and I would meet,
When the blackbird watched the vixen, as she passed on silent feet.
When the lake was all aglimmer, and the swans sailed by the shore,
You would kiss me, love, and tell me, I was yours for evermore.

In the early, early evening, we’d lie in love’s embrace,
And with whispered words of tenderness, the pale stars we’d enlace.
You said love was eternal, like the mountains and the sea,
As the swans hold fast forever, so would you be true to me.

In the early, early morning, you told me you must leave,
Like swans we’d not be parted, and so I was not to grieve.
For you’d be back to fetch me, before the snow lay on the ground,
But the stars died in the sky, love, they died without a sound.

I watch the road you left by, I sit here every day,
The swans have left the lake, love, since the day you went away.
The winter snow’s long melted, and the trees are full of leaf,
This swan has lost her mate, love, and her head is bowed in grief.

She hides her face among the roses

Painting by Giuseppe Mentessi


She hides her face among the roses,

Hopes their scent will drive away,

The black thoughts carried in the stormwind,

The day her lover went away.


She hides her face amid the beauty,

Petals soft and scent so sweet,

She lets her tears fall with the dewdrops,

Lets her heart accept defeat.


In the tree a blackbird’s singing,

Fills the air with magic balm,

Music woven, musk rose, starlight,

Swan’s wings bear her far from harm.

Haiku Challenge: Inspire and Loss

This week’s haiku in response to the challenge from Ronovan. If you are sick of me and blackbirds, read no further.



Song spring-inspired

fading into dark winter

your death the earth’s loss.

In two lines:

Song, spring-inspired, fading into dark winter.

Fading into dark winter, your death, the earth’s loss.

The blackbird

A bit of self-indulgence for one of my favourite birds.


You sang your small heart to the summer,

Filled the woods with an endless song.

The soul of the orchard and hedgerow,

Your magic swelled all summer long.

But you wore out your heart with your singing,

Your brittle bones failed, not your art,

Winter’s white hand took your sweet songs,

And its cold fingers stilled your warm heart.

The roses have withered and fallen,

You have flown to the Islands of Bliss,

Where blackbirds still sing in the rose trees,

In that world so much gentler than this.