Blow Away

I held tightly onto your hand
afraid that I was so small
I would fly away in the wind
like a lost balloon.

I thought if I ever let go
I might dance away
like the fluttering leaves
that were falling on my head.

But when I did let go,
taller and less likely to
blow away I found
that I didn’t need
to hold on, and I was
able to stand alone.

The Hotel with the Blue Windows

I

When she first came to the hotel, the window frames had been newly painted and the stench of fresh paint hung around, impossible to mask. Everything else was newly painted too. She was the first person to stay in that room, with its new springy bed, pure white bed linen, as yet unmarked with stains, and cheaply framed reproduction prints hanging on the walls.

It wasn’t perfect – the shower leaked, the bed was creaky, and the room was stuffy and airless. But she had stayed in worse places.

II

The paint on the windows is flaking now, peeling away as it faces the elements. She is still there. She never left. The cracks are showing – not only in the paint, but everywhere, for the hotel is worn and run down. There are no other guests these days.

The blue windowed hotel does not admit them anymore.

Misty Rememberings [prompt]

Early morning mist covers the lawns
as the sun comes up – blue skies
a bright day is promised.
The earth is scorched – it has been
warm, too warm and the grass
is brittle and crisp, brown now.
signs of the past
have been revealed
the earth peeling back, revealing
what is past
a garden once there,
foundations of a building that once
stood – long gone.
the heat reveals it all
strips back to the past
to what has been buried and forgotten –
it now lies on the surface
ready to be discovered.

II
It was a formal garden once
laid out and cared for by a team of gardeners
now it is just grass, the secrets
of the past have been long covered up
there is nothing to show –
but the past remains
to haunt them, long after it’s gone.

an old walkway long covered by water
stripped back to walk across again
a village buried and forgotten
now emerging from the water.
lost foundations and runways
echoes of buildings once there.

Salt Musings [prompt]

he stands by the water
early morning, alone
it is like glass
not a soul has stirred
these are the quiet moments
the golden ones.
It is already warm, the air
is still, calm
he listens, watches the gentle waves
hit the beach and retreat –
one
two
three
and then another set
it is music to his soul
a balm.
It is all he sees –
he is lost in the repetition, the methodicalness –
he owns it and yet it owns him
controls him
brings him back from the brink.

II
the storm rages.
he is gone now
the lonely figure
the waves beat at the beach
anger, power
beats down
hard
heavy
it doesn’t relent
the oasis is now a trap.

A Mother’s Love

She bends to kiss him on the head,
scoop him into her arms
keep him safe
Mummy’s always going to be here
keeping you safe
holding you close.
The child clings to her,
hands warm and sticky,
staying close, even as he wonders
at the world – sees it in awe
but he’s safe, he knows he is,
protected in her arms forever
a bond that cannot be broken.
She walks him to the water’s edge
and they stand, watching the sun
go down over the ocean.
She will never leave him,
not by her choice.

Edges (Inspired by Patrick Heron @ the Tate)

EDGES I
the colours bleed into the corners
lines pushed against the edges
defying, pushing, contorting –
defying expectations,
a life lived at the edge
always
pushing
pushing
to the max.
The colours bleed –
they are stark, bright –
shapes and lines,
look closely and they mean nothing
but they stretch across the wall.
We live life at the edges
life is lived in the corners
of the eye
the mind
an existence –
II
I am at the edge.
I peer over, into the next
round the corners
there are things not seen,
things that linger
there beyond the edges – the corners
of a life.

A Dark Pool (inspired by Laura Knight)

The wind spins around her. The hairs on her arms bristle – the heat of the summer has been lost. Her feet cling to the rocks, hardened and worn after a summer spent scrabbling over rocks, searching for shells and crabs.

This is the first time that she has been alone in a while and she relishes it.

The sea swirls around her and she stares into the dark pool where the water spins, crashing against the rocks, spraying her feet and making her shiver. She watches the water swirl, mesmerized, and then from beneath her dress she takes the letters and tears them into shreds, scattering them onto the waves, watching the ocean swallow them and the pieces disappear, like ash floating on the wind.

The Butterfly

The butterfly’s wings beat gentle
as it settles brown wings
onto the flowers I carry.
It stays as I walk
down the twisting pathway
towards you. It flutters
away before we get there
but through it, I feel you with me.

You are there again on a Cornish hillside
in late January sunshine
unexpected, but beating your brown
wings, sunbathing in the rays
you dance around us, to let us know
that you are there with us
before vanishing into the hedgerow.

I see you again closer to home
on a scorching summer’s day
you fly in to check up on us
lazily circling around
in the heat and I watch
you rise and dive
among the bright flowers
that still thrive
despite the fierce, blazing sun
and the wily hands of time and neglect.