Friday 8 March 2013


You could argue all poetry is prompted/provoked by something else, by something beyond the poem. Everything must have a stimulus, the grain of grit that irritates until the pearl encloses it. Well, everything since the Big Bang, who can tell what prompted that?

So some poems and their origins. Read and tell what made you write.

This first one I started last year when I was driving to the Fishguard Festival. When my children were young we holidayed around South Wales a number of times. Pembrokeshire is one of the most beautiful areas of this island.

I had not been back around there since my first wife died and as I drove memories came forward as I recognised the roads. I reflected on how different my life is now. I can recognise who I was then but I wondered if that past me could have comprehended what he would become?

You entered the car just after Haverfordwest, the signage evoking memories, now your ghost is with me. The further I travel forward the more the past superimposes itself on the landscape. What would that past self make of me? The kids are grown, I am a poet, driving to a gig, in love with another woman. You are all around me.

possibly the wrong season for the haiku

Haiku for winter sun

Now sun splashed red brick
The branches and birds casting
Flickering shadows

the church near my house has put up wooden doors to enclose the dry areas where people had been sleeping
                                        it is true the doors things of beauty the carpenters joy in his work echoes the skills of the church builders                                                           
                                                                                                    i know i would think differently if i needed a dry place to sleep
                                                                                               this is not the first time when i was a social worker at county hall they did the same thing to a space by the hot air vents

I expect there is a whole process in both cases that I know nothing about. It does not matter this is my reaction to the parts of the stories I do know.

This last poem’s origin was a photograph of a robin blue bowl, hand crafted with an irregular rim, that was white as bone on the inside. We were given the task of describing it in a workshop sometime ago and this was my response.


Sinbad did not lie, he told his truth honestly,
Rode that big bird across the ocean,
Carried far beyond reality, into fantasy,
A story to beguile that murdering Persian.
The egg is real; I see its shell,
Blue, speckled black, bone white inside,
How large it is I cannot tell,
The photograph says much, but hides
Dimensions from my questing gaze.
I sense that this is the point in time
To grasp the thread, to leave the maze,
To embrace the world as if it were mine.
It always is what we hope it will be
Holy, beautiful and wrapped with mystery

What do you think of it? Could you see the bowl? I think we are blessed if we can see the mystery, for that surely is the beauty of life.


  1. Oooh I like your poems. Anyone who can write Haikus has my respect. I always end up with 1 too many syllables. (story of my life..)

    1. Thanks. I think Haikus require practice, and sometimes they just don't fit.

  2. I love your poems, and I agree, mystery in every day things (and exceptional things) makes life so much more worth it.

    1. Thanks Bethany. Mystery and wonder certainly add to the quality of life.

  3. Beautiful description of your interpretation of the bowl.

    1. Thanks Golden Eagle. It's a pity I couldn't find the actual photo.