A lover

A lover

In the hanging trees, the shrivel-fruit are dark
as no-moon and bitter as sloes, black the shadows,
pinched, a dead hand’s grip.

Through the leaf-rustle I wade
though briar’s cruel canes bar the way,
fox tracks too low, too narrow for me to pass,

and the air moves above my head
in feathered waves of startled pigeons,
clattering from their roost.

They tell me I will find you on the bald hill,
rabbit-cropped turf, dark beneath the no-moon,
where the owls sing to lure the stars.

They tell me I may not like what I find,
but still I take the cold path, no choice but to follow,
though your only sweetness be lilies.

Waiting for the moon

Waiting for the moon

I’ll stand and wait for moonrise,
the rising of the light,
the silvering of meadows,
the darkening of night,
to hear the owl song echoing
among the spindle trees,
to hear the owl song echoing,
his soft voice in the breeze.

When veils of rain have fallen
into the arms of night,
I’ll stand and wait for moonrise,
the growing of the light
and listen for the owl’s song
among the darkling trees,
among the silver branches,
stirred by a silver breeze.

And will you wait here with me
while silver laps the hedge,
a tide of misty moonlight
is a sea where feathers fledge?
Our fingers joined like heartbeats,
the beating of pale wings
plays in silver fluting moonlight
such songs as the night bird sings.

Goodnight moon

at the end of the day

we can only say the day is ended

the sun has set

and in the whispering of the leaves

is the promise of tomorrow


tomorrow begins with the dark

and the moon’s course across the sky

the patterings and scufflings among the grasses

the hunting owls

and the dropping dew


dew prefigures frost

the silver veiling of the earth

paling of the green

and trembling tree shadows

to the colour of moonlight


moonlight bathes

the meadow is awash

and the day has ended in the night ocean

I sail sunwards

clutching my promise of tomorrow

night talk


all day long the thrushes sing

and in the night the owls

play ghost with one another

among the swaying trees


beneath the cold stars winking

their feathery tremolo rolls

and bright-eyed mice count frightened

heartbeats hard as sunflower seeds


among damp night stalks trembling

foxes walk and badgers growl

while I listen to the moonlight-

darkened voices of the wild


breathe the musky scent of tree bark

and the rolling dewy grasses

where they walk and we would follow

ghosts all in the dusky night


A poem I wrote today and have finished up for the dverse prompt.



Tonight it seems as though the sky,

the heavy drapery diamond-stitched,

waveless, waterless ocean where ice

is formed and falls in flakes

of chiselled chaff, is blue as day,

the light turned off and curtains drawn.

The light turned off and curtains drawn,

purblind we cower beneath

the trembling shadow-wings

of its monumental dark majesty.


The hand that shakes

A butterfly cinquain that doesn’t quite fit the remit for Colleen’s challenge as I have only used a synonym for one of the words.


The hand

that shakes the trees

is the wind’s, the voice that

calls in the night and stirs your dreams.


to its wild song woven with threads

of moon silver and the

gentle questions

of owls.

Night owls and cold moon

Kerfe’s owl again.

owl moon s

night is cold

full of stars and owls

hard brilliance

feather softness

bound in streamers of moonlight


night is cold

windows run wet

breath steams and streams

while the owl mocks

our shivering


owl song trembles

tremolo among the dark trees

warm notes

winged grace quavering

in the chill of starlight


moon round and pale

baleful silver

silent as owl-flight

casts a chill eye

for the night is cold

A toad sits


Night flies on out-flung turquoise wings

folding feathers of fucshia and the taste

of pressed gold into cloud shapes and the

roaring of the poplars in the wind.


Grass shadow stretches earthwards and

upwards grey as dusky earth and the colour

of the toad waiting for the light music to fade

and the tranquil dark sea to rise and fall.


Cool seeps from well and water, earth turns

slow and stately as moonbeams, and life walks

on slender bufonid legs into the leaf-rustle

hush of the star-dimpled night ocean.

In the reaches of the night


Something calls in the reaches of the night, where stars

wash back and forth, caught in the swell of the sky.


Its wordless words are saying that this place between

hoof, paw and the netted stars, that stirs in flaring nostrils


and tastes of the night, is love and anguish at its loss, is

birth and death and all of life between, muscles sliding


beneath hide and feathered flight. It says, listen to life

calling, hear its song in the snailshell of the ear, feel it


growing deep in the bones. Keep it close, let it not be

snatched away snuffed out in blood and tears,


but carry it always to sing, loud-throated as the blackbird,

into the teeth of death and the last silence.