I Am Poetry Pamphlet Available

August is a funny old month. Summer always feels like it’s sort of nearly over and it brings with it lots of memories. It’s ten years next week since everything changed. It’s impossible to imagine at the time, but soon grief and loss just become a part of the landscape of your life and after a while, it dulls. It doesn’t go away, it just becomes normal, and so you forget to think perhaps that it is odd or something that happened to you. It is just a fact of life, something that you live with.

Ten years is a long time, a lot of time for life to happen. Everything in life now is separated into a before and after, and the after is beginning to stretch out, longer and longer, so that the big things that happen in life, and the little things too, have become uncountable. Adult life has been this huge ‘after’ and we have never known any different, so it’s just normal.

Over the years, I’ve written many poems on the subject, and this year I decided to put together some of my favourites in this little pamphlet, with the idea that any money raised from selling some copies will go to the wonderful St Wilfried’s Hospice in Eastbourne, who although we perhaps didn’t appreciate it at the time, took great care of us all. Hospices are strange places to be, but the work that they do is so so important, but they need funding. Hospices make people comfortable at the end of their lives and give them a nice, caring place to be.

If you’d like to buy a copy, then it’s available through my Etsy shop as a physical thing or a pdf download. Thanks for the support!

Offerings

you bring white
and blue, green
and red, orange
and pink
lids and straws
containers, rope
coffee cups
action figures
that I dump
on the shore
before retreating.

I return
for them hours later,
emptying the shoreline
swallowing them whole

offerings you do not want.

Nor do I.

The Way Back

I don’t long to go back, not really
for I know that I will not find
the footprints of childhood
still residing there
but only a ghost of what
was once, a faint thread
leading me back
to somewhere that no longer exists
and cannot be any more
for the world has kept spinning
and I have kept moving
through this life and it no longer
waits for me in the shadowy
wings but has been wiped away
and all that is left
is the ripples, ghost
of a place and time and people
that once was
and no longer is.

Crossing

here, the sand is soft underfoot, a far cry
from the pebbles of my childhood beaches,
where the shingle is stacked tall, a rocky bank to run down,
the stones hard, feet sinking,
wincing
squealing
from car to water, standing at the water’s edge, watching the waves
roll in and out.

here, the golden sand

stretches for miles, the water

blue and green, a world away from the grey, muddy water where once
we floated on our backs like starfish, the sun still warm at gone seven
and it felt like another place –

I am home now, here,
where I have crossed the bridge between two worlds
and where my wings are set free and the weight of the past has flown.

here, the sand is soft underfoot.

my feet sink down, rooting me here.

land meets sea meets river

land meets sea meets river
narrows to a thin snake,
penned in by sandbanks and creeks,
wriggling to the side, becoming
a pinpoint, nothing
quay quay jetty quay
docks jetties quay quay
in the mouth
a dance.

Names strange
to the tongue:
Polkerris, Polglaze, Polpey
pond, lake or well
Tregaminion, Trezare, Tregear
settlement or homestead
Penhale, Penpol, Penleath
hill or headland
Washing, Blackbottle, Killyvarder,
the sailors warning.

The Saint’s Way
meets the Coast Path
wriggling
along the changing coastline
disappearing
over the crease
of the folded page.

Sit With Me

Sit with me by the water’s edge
watch the world floating by
let the waves wash away
all those troubles and worries
talk to me about nothing much
just life and the colour
of the sky and sand
but please, just sit
with me, for a little while.

Glasshouses

sunlight breaks
through glass
early morning rising
shadows cast
reflected on the ground
shapes patterns
heat rising, earth, warm
in the air smell
travel the world
between four walls
tall ceilings reaching
into the clouds
daydreamer
grow
fly

Our Kingdom

Trace the paths
with your fingertips
see where they disappear
into nothing, hedges
and secret places.

*

See where our world
begins and ends
stays within the hedgerows
that border this kingdom,
a land of make-believe.

*

See where the grass
dips, where the banks
roll away and the daffodils
bloom, where we lie
under the blossom tree.

*

See where we grow
like flowers blooming
in the wild, secret, protected
and rooted in the soil,
the fabric of this place.

Skeletons

Perhaps, your skeleton lies
at the bottom of the ocean
and I am just trying to find it,

following a road with no map
plummetting into the darkness
falling into something I can’t fathom

like divers who explore the depths
of the ocean, less familiar
than the surface of the moon.

Ships rest on the seabed,
hulls perfectly preserved
not wanting to be found.

Darkness does not encourage
life to thrive, a vacuum
like the one that you left

behind, the day that you went
somewhere I cannot follow,
as mysterious as the ocean depths.