The answer


There are days without sun

sorrows with no name

hearts with no home

and homes with no heart.

There are names without meaning

meanings with no heart

suns with no fire

fire with no heart.

There are heads with no questions

and questions with no answers.

The world turns in circles

widening to infinity

infinitely questioning

the motion and stasis

of life and death

and the answer to why?

Yet I know that if

through all the infinite vastness

the ripples would contract

and the circles recede

to gather in the cupped palms

of my hands

the answer would fall




Haibun: musings on a death


They took us to see The Greatest Story Ever Told when I was at primary school. We all knew the story, that Jesus gets killed in the end, but like all stories, knowing the end doesn’t mean you don’t hope it to be different this time. He still gets killed, but I could see lots of times when he could have escaped, or said what the very reasonable bald man wanted him to say and gone home to his mum, but he didn’t. Why not? The answer was never clear. To save us. Who? I wasn’t even born. And from what? The Romans? If it was to wash away our sins, why do I have to go through the terror and ignominy of confession every few weeks?

Sympathy fades quickly for someone who persists on a path of self-destruction. Like Mrs Roper’s husband and the drink.

hare lures the fox

from the shallow form

so her young can live

Peeling back the layers


Peeling back the layers of silence,

the silence of songbirds, grass-whispers,

and the rushy quiet of the poplars,

there is still silence.

Peeling back the layers of movement,

lizard dart, bird flash,

boughs swaying in time to the slow flap flap of the heron,

and the earth still turns.

I wonder, do I love this solitude,

the ever-changing scene beyond the window,

the summer-long crunch of dry grass beneath my feet,

the berried and bedecked autumn trees?

Walking, we start a hare.

I watch it lope away, unhurried,

while dog still snuffs the empty briar patch.

Sun washes the last haystacks,

and in the dappling of the dancing leaves,

I see the hare hop merrily across the stream.

Perhaps this is all that matters.

And that you will be home this evening

to watch the shadows creep across the meadow.



I ask are all seas lazy blue,Screen Shot 2017-05-06 at 12.08.50

do mists lie like purple skies?

Do some soar,

singing sweet symphonies

and others cry,

their skin ripped raw

in the bitter red rain?



I ask do you recallScreen Shot 2017-05-06 at 12.18.33

how petals rusted like blood

in the rain

and you became

a shadow in the sun,

a whisper in the wind?



I ask the roseScreen Shot 2017-05-06 at 12.27.47

with petals red as blood,

does your beauty shine

in the light of the sun

and in the shadow of the moon?

What can you see?

Another triolet inspired by nothing in particular except an effort to rise above the bongos beneath the window and the rumba over the wall. So no complicated poetry forms for me today, sorry NaPoWriMo.


What can you see through the gap in the cloud,

Is the sky still as blue where you soar on white wings,

Is the crash of breakers beneath as loud?

What can you see through the gap in the cloud,

Do our towers of steel and stone stand proud,

Though they cannot reach where the starlight sings?

What can you see through the gap in the cloud,

Is the crash of breakers beneath as loud?

Tides and time

Threes again.


My tide is running high:

should I leap, the waves will

part their ranks to catch me.


In pink-tinged dusk, the sky,

full of starlings roosting,

calls me back home to sleep.


Should I wait for the wind,

will my dreams wait with me,

your smile be still for me?


Sun, moon rise, birds flutter,

the eternal wheel turns.

Is there peace in stillness?


I cannot hear your voice

above the ocean’s roar,

see your face through the spray.


Poised on the brink, I hear

winds of time blow, waves break:

my tide is on the turn.


Lost stars

Photo ©Michael J. Bennett


When I have pulled the stars down from the sky,

Will I still marvel at the glitter in my hand,

Desire netted like a silver fish?


Will you still want to share your nights with me

And watch the changing patterns of the light,

When I have pulled the stars down from the sky?


If you should walk away into the shade,

Wrapped in moonlight, following a dream,

Will I still marvel at the glitter in my hand?


Without you, gutters throw back muddy stars,

The night is bland, reflected neon glares,

Desire netted like a silver fish.

Who do I hold?

Photo ©BLM Nevada


What do we see in the night time,

When the stars hide behind the clouds,

And the moon’s a pale memory?


Do we talk to shades, to things long dead

And reach for hands no longer there?

What do we see in the night time?


Red tempest rages in the sky,

Dying dark with the failing sun,

When the stars hide behind the clouds.


Who do I hold when the bed is cold,

For the tide has ebbed you rose for me,

And the moon’s a pale memory.

This time

It’s Magnetic Saturday, time to play with the magnets and listen to the oracle. After sending a couple of sweet messages, the oracle clammed up and refused to give me the words I wanted. Just goes to show that these magnetic poems are not entirely the poet’s creation. I had to finish this one free hand.


Why is the path so longscreen-shot-2016-10-01-at-16-26-42

from here to there?

And dark the wind

as rain rustles softly?

Where do you wander

deep in the night

when the moon grows lonely

and I sleep gentle?

The answers lie in the morning,

in the dew on the roses,

when I look in your face,

and you take my hand,

and you say,

This time, this day

and the night that will follow,


In the depths of the night

Another ghazal for the Daily Post prompt: reach.


What lies beyond darkness where there’s no more light,

And black is the sky in the depths of the night?


Can I reach the moon, catch the stars in my hand,

Though they shine so high in the depths of the night?


I’d give stars to you, love, to shine in your eyes,

To hear your soft sigh in the depths of the night.


Together we’d soar on the back of a dream,

On Pegasus fly, in the depths of the night.


My lips placed on yours, love, your questions to quell,

You must not ask why, in the depths of the night.