Ten weeks

Can’t upload the vid so please imagine a baby’s first song.

Ten weeks

and the world is singing
cradled in the arms of mothers
and the fruitful earth.

Beneath the sun
swallows skim the fallen hay
in insect clouds

kite and kestrel
hang among the clouds
too high to hurt.

Earth sings
I hear the thrushes
and in my heart
a baby learns the notes
of their imperfectible song.

Gogyohka sequence for morning songs

looking south and west

on the telephone wire

the kestrel’s perch

a blackbird sings

suspended above hedge and nest

oblivious to property rights


morning music swells

the oriole section in the poplars

thrush and blackbird centre oaks

and on the right

woodpigeon percussion


waking to sunlight

pale as moonlight

silver in the grass where gold waits

strung with jewelled drops

of birdsong

Noisy quiet

field of sunshine


In this puddled field

cricket-blithe after the rain

where frogs rattle and croak deep in grass-hung ditches

I hear the lowing of cattle long gone,

a plaintive moan blowing between the trees

dripping from spring-hazed branches of a different time.

Woodpecker remembers and thrush,

though the hedges are sparse now,

meagre as a cold spring.

They remember days that never ended

carried on the nightingale’s song

moonlit-dancing through the woods.

Silver-dewed and dropped

the field where the pheasant coughs

too shiny new to know anything but triumph

in his hard-won freedom.

On the night lake

Another of Paul Militaru’s photos with the lovely title of Night and snow over birds prompted this poem. Thank you, Paul!


On the night lake, grey gulls glide,

While snow falls thick upon the ride,

Where foxes pad and pheasants hide.

In summer waters small boats plied

Across the lake so smooth so wide,

Where mallards swim and grey gulls glide,

And many came here, sat and sighed

For lovers lost, for lovers died.

While snow falls thick upon the ride,

As cold as tears I’ve shed and dried,

Like stone I sit in lonely pride,

Among the gulls that drift and glide,

And wait for turning time and tide.



This is a poem inspired by the prompt for Day Four of NaPoWriMo. I’m not certain it fits exactly, but it’s what the prompt brought up. That’s poetry, I suppose.

The photograph ©Poudou is of the Chemin des Dames close to where I used to live in the Aisne.


The dawn breaks coloured blood,

and the roses are in bud,

the roses are in bud.


They say it will be hell,

still rosebuds begin to swell,

rosebuds begin to swell.


Though death sweeps through this room,

the roses are in bloom,

the roses are in bloom.


A country’s churned to mud,

but the roses are in bud,

the roses are in bud.



Play the song—now you can!

Paul Dear hosted the dverse prompt on Tuesday, and the result was this, a song without a tune. Paul, whose talent knows no bounds, heard a tune in the words and transformed my poem song into a real song. This is it. The rough version. Maybe he’ll post another version when Tony Visconti’s finished with it 🙂 Thanks Paul, I’m very flattered.

[Play the song](https://clyp.it/yrxai2jo)


Songs again. This is in response to the Day 2 quote of Jilly’s challenge:

“That morning the sun forgot to rise”  Jim Harrison.


The morning the deer come no more to the brake,

And the sight of your face is like cloud in blue skies,

When the thrushes are silent along the still lake,

Is the morning the sun will forget how to rise.


When the evening star falls through the oaks in the wood,

And the tides of the ocean cease their ebb and flow,

When the moon’s face reflected is red as shed blood,

Is the evening I’ll tell you I want you to go.

Sound of music

The dverse quadrille prompt is ‘sounding-off’. Sound is such a vast and beautiful area I wrote two.

Photo ©Malene Thyssen


Even when the traffic growls

and rappers grumble

and drunken shouts tear up the evening air,

I hear the sound,

sometimes far, sometimes near at hand,

the pulsing music,

water-ripple, star-bright,

sun-dappled, honey-sweet,

petal-soft and love-fierce,

the ancient, insistent notes

of the blackbird’s song.


In the seashell,

rolling in the spirals and whorls

and roundy curls

is all the majestic, uproarious sound

of the ocean heaving deep and green

and poplars ranting their rustling dreams,

and if you listen carefully,

behind the song of the surf,

a blackbird.


She watches the waves on the river

In France at least, today is not International Women’s Day, it’s International Women’s Rights Day. Nuance. It isn’t a day to say, I love you Mum, Grandma, aren’t we strong and wonderful? It isn’t a day to paint everything pink and take advantage of the reductions on bra and pantie sets, to tell your daughters they are strong and wonderful because they can be in a girls band or play football just like the boys except that nobody will want to watch them play. Today is a day when we take stock of how few rights women have worldwide, how women are still having to fight to be treated as human beings, how even in our enlightened western countries women are still ignored, patronised, told that their fight for equality is nowhere near as important as minority rights, workers rights, you name it anything at all rights.

I was intending to write something appropriately stirring, but women’s rights have become so entangled now with defending a woman’s freedom to not be free that equality in any of its aspects seems depressingly far away. I didn’t come up with anything better than this ballad. The old, old story that will have to symbolise the role of woman to be the spectator, the one left behind, the one who will never leave her post.

Painting ©ReneSchuler



I watch the waves on the river roll,

The seagulls bank on the brisk salt breeze,

I watch the road for a sight of you,

But the river sighs like wind in the trees.


You said you’d come when the geese returned,

When the frosts were gone with the breath of spring,

I watch the leaves and they’re fresh and green,

But no sign of you does the river bring.


The sun is warm but my face is wet,

With all the tears, a bright river flows,

I watch the sky, but the geese have flown,

Where my love’s gone, only the river knows.