Poetry

Tales by the hearth

The fire crackles in the grate,

shadows dancing with smoke tendrils as she reads

aloud, cloaked figures sneaking through her voice

to my wondering ears

as I cling to the embroidered arm of her chair.

 

The ritual nightly, yet never dull.

I play with the bobble on her slippers as she pauses to sip

Lady Grey from her fine china cup

then places it back on the saucer.

 

Resuming her place as though no pause had been taken

she leads me into the night

to meet the King of Dreams.

 

When I wake, the fire is dead

and her chair is cold,

its colours faded.

Poetry

Fragile chamber

Cold is the taste of your heart when it’s been locked up for too long.

Chisel it out, careful, careful

and throw it on the fire.

Don’t worry, it won’t burn.

Watch it thaw,

see the flame-hands nurse it back

squeezing out the poison haunting your veins.

Take it from them.

Firm grip now,

and push it back in place.

You’ll get used to it – it won’t always be heavy.

 

Poetry

Prism Song

The warmth from the window hits me in time with the gentle touch of your fingers resting on my shoulder. In this moment, my eyes sweeping over the words of a book you gave me, hungry for the story you knew I’d love, I can glimpse the certainty of our future. It’s always these small things,

small comforts,

that get me. I’m at home in your embrace, alive in your company. And I know, with you, I can achieve all of my dreams. My ambitions don’t worry, scare or intimidate you. You see the spring of my creativity and bathe in it. You help me polish the crystals found in its waters, giving me confidence to share them with the world.

Poetry

Calcified

You find it on the hearth, a tiny thing,

still a flutter beneath the calcified outer.

The warmth inside has faded to a simple prickle

that decreases every moment.

 

How did it get there, who cast it aside

to continue on their life without it,

hoping to never feel the pain and uncertainty that love can bring,

while forgetting how their view of everything

becomes just that little bit brighter for it?

 

You cradle it, unwanted heart,

hold it close to your own so it can share your heat,

build up a rhythm to restore its strength.

 

You guide it until it can beat on its own

and then let it make its way

back to the world

where it can find that reason to glow again.

Poetry

Ten thousand steps and counting

We can go years without connecting with anyone.

Passing comments with associates, laughing at their jokes,

offering background information.

Some say that is connecting.

But it’s not.

Not on a level where

all illusions dissipate,

body language relaxes and accents sneak back in

to chilled speech.

Not on a level where you know what the other is thinking,

gather a conversation of meaning

from one gesture

and laugh just from the slight twinkle

in each other’s eyes.

We can go years without that,

and then one day

stumble into the realisation that the right person

was there all along,

and together

you squeeze the friendship

of those years

into a month or two, and go on

as if it’s always been that way.

Poetry

Platonic

Most of the time when we say

I love you

it’s directed at our spouse, our lover, our other half

but

what of all the other loves

that fill our hearts,

give us warmth, comfort, security?

What of the people

who make us feel like us,

who make us so at ease

that we couldn’t hide ourselves if we tried?

I think it’s time we

told them, too.

So here it is,

plain and simple, my friends:

I love you

 

Poetry

H.U.Gs

We sell heaters for 99p. They’ll not oil filled, or gas fueled; not even blower heaters. They’re fleshy and warm: heart utilization generators. H.U.Gs for short. Most people walk straight past them, not trusting them to be efficient enough for their needs. So they sit there on the shelf, year in, year out, gathering dust. I thought I’d tidy them up today, display them a bit better. I sold two in twenty minutes. The buyers were the happiest customers I’ve ever seen.

Poetry

Two Hearts

The heart on a pillow of sunshine

leans across to speak

to the heart under a cover of shade,

wrapped firmly from all light

by woven clouds.

It pumps bold colour down

onto the humid sheets,

tie-dyeing them with rainbows.

The heart under a cover of shade

rolls over. ‘Colour is meaningless

when my eyes only see grey,’ it says.

The heart on the pillow of sunshine

smiles. ‘Then let me show you how

the colours feel, instead.’

Poetry

What lingers

There is comfort to the closeness. Strong scents jarring the nose but relaxing muscles in a way only home can. The earth is close. The weight above, to the sides and below. Inhale. Exhale. A constant movement against motionless time. Soft grumbling from deeper in, memories of warmth. There is nostalgia here, mixed with the damp soil.

Poetry

A pensive hound

Snug and warm,

a mass of fluffy black fur

to rest my head against;

my bright-eyed, wet-nosed mentor

lounging in the shade

behind discarded tins of fence paint.

 

A lolling tongue

hangs from her mouth

as she looks up at the sky,

watching a flock of birds ark and swoop,

they dip their wings to her

as they pass by.