Friday 21 December 2012


A Solstice meditation, 2012.

Guarding the Book of Karma
Hunches a red Dragon,
Wings partly unfurled as if
Anticipating interlopers
Who would steal my essence away.
Scales glowing with inner fire
That imbues eyes and mind with truth
Of the life few but I can see.
It reaches full power on the midnight hour
At this Winter Solstice time.
Upon my Guardian's back I fly
Through dimensions by science uncharted
To the Druid's retreat where the Prophet's words,
Uttered in a time of madness divine,
Are as yet in granite unset.
And on the summit of His sacred Hill,
Dwarfed by mountains above,
I gaze over wintry landscape below
Where the Dragon Master, withdrawn, observes
From Annwn* beneath the ground.
He's alert and stands in readiness
As Clas Myrddin's* direst need
Draws ever closer with latter-day man's
Greed, selfishness and disregard
For all life but his own.
Now a nearby Hawthorn Tree emits
Golden unearthly light.
Then from within, Emrys steps out.
He increases my auric vibrational speed,
Aligning it with his.
In awe, I'm filled with abject fear
That my brain will overload
If it mediates One from the Fifth Dimension.
But his soothing voice cuts in,
"Just relax and I'll do the rest!"
Before me I see the entire population
All at once - it seems that I
Have acquired spontaneous cosmic vision.
And I'm no longer me - it appears I've become
A channel for His wisdom.
Now, mind-to-mind He's linked us together,
Like a Spiritual Internet.
So I beg of you please open your heart
To the Spirit of Alban Arthuan tonight
And allow his words inside:
"I, Emrys, can see beyond
The mirror of your Soul.
I've been observing your progress through
Your many lives on Earth.
But this present one is all-important,
With free-will you wield great power:
You have the choice to love, not hate,
To calmly accept and tolerate
Those who differ from you...
Choose wisely from your Higher Self -
Only then can your World be saved..."
*Annwn - The Celtic Underworld.
*Clas Myrddin - Merlyn's Enclosure (The British Isles).
Solstice Blessings


Friday 14 December 2012


You must have been born
under a mathematical sign,
because everything
has to add up
reduce down
divide into
or multiply by:
or nine.

I once lived in a six-roomed apartment,
and no amount of cajoling could induce you
to set foot over the threshold;
not even when I swore on my life
that your world really wouldn't implode
if you did.
You just sat there on my doorstep,
sipping your coffee and shivering
in the dead of winter, saying
you'd much rather freeze to death
than dare risk tempting fate!

I expect you remember, too, that time
when five letters landed on your doormat?
How you had a major panic attack?
You simply couldn't get your head around
the audacity of these
little white squares of paper
to challenge you to such a degree.
You screamed at me to 'GET RID OF THEM!'
I refused, 'because,' I said,
'they may be important.'
So you sat on the floor in the hall,
dumbly staring at them; clearly
in some kind of trauma.
In the end,
you had to tear two of them in half - to
make up seven, of course.
But even then you couldn't rest:
had to go back and tear
another two to make nine,
it being the higher and, therefore,
most important of the
three numbers.

And as for crossing the road - a
simple enough task, one would think.
Not for you!
Seven vehicles have to pass
before you dare step onto the highway.
It has to be seven precisely,
even if the eighth is following
perilously close behind it.
How many times has an enraged
number eight threatened to kill you,
after screeching to a halt
with number nine firmly embedded
up his backside?
I'm more than convinced you really do
have eight more lives in reserve!

Another big ordeal for you
is eating a packet of crisps.
You have to open them,
count them out,
and if the contents inside aren't divisible
by one of your three numbers
then they're consigned to the nearest bin.
Another pack is then opened
and the process begins again.
Needless to say, you
have to buy your crisps
by the truckload.

And as for your love-life, well,
that has always been 'troubled'
to put it mildly.
The phrase 'one-to-one' just isn't
in your vocabulary.
You're nothing if not predictable.
There have to be three, seven,
or nine on the go at any one time
(now there's a surprise!).
The black eyes, broken noses
and lost teeth must surely
earn you an entry in the
Guinness Book of Records
as 'Most Fought-Over Woman!'

These days,
I often sit and wonder
how it will eventually end - your
life, I mean.
Knowing you as I do, it
certainly won't be peacefully
in bed, of old age.
You'd loath that.
No. It would have to be
in some way numerical and dramatic,
such as the Celtic Triple Death.
Yes, that's it!
then drowning.
And, naturally, you'd accept no less
than a pyramid
as your final resting place -
guarded, of course, by
a triumvirate of Goddess statues.
Only then would you rest in peace:
the unorthodox mathematician
numerically lulled to sleep.


Friday 7 December 2012

LOT 22

 Catalogue page: British Car Auctions
An auction hall filled with cars.
Vintage, classic, collector's vehicles; all
shapes, sizes, colours and marques
on display here today - all
for some reason no longer wanted.
A discordant cacophony
of excited voices conjure images
of a cattle market with all
the anxiety and suffering that implies
for those poor wretched animals - like these
with their four wheels and polished bonnets
instead of legs and fur coats.
Unbidden emotions begin to stir
in my solar plexus. My eyes
prickle with embryonic tears and I wish
to be a million miles away - or just
at home sipping coffee from my favourite mug
on an ordinary, nothing special day.
But this is an horrendous day, an
'I wish I could re-write history' day; when
grief and remorse are simultaneously
devouring me from the inside out.
All I want is to be sitting inside her
on Portsdown Hill admiring the view.
I need one last day with her.
Checking my watch. There's still
twenty minutes of ownership left.
So my attention focuses on the other entries.
And it strikes me that each one of these
beauties has a story to tell - about us,
and that brings me full circle
back to UNK. I've loved in her,
laughed in her, cried and screamed
words of anger - all this raw emotion
recorded in the fabric of her being
will exist for as long as she does.
But, soon, a new layer will bury mine.
At the appointed hour, the auctioneer's voice
is carried through the Tannoy into each corner
of the packed hall. Instant silence.
Anticipation is almost palpable.
Most of the first twenty-one entries
fail to reach their reserve prices, and
I can't help but hope it will be the same
with UNK, can't bear the idea
of a stranger's hands on her steering wheel.
Then those words like a sword through the heart:
'Lot 22!' Please don't let anyone bid
I pray silently inside my head.
But attack comes from every direction
like a conquering army, even through
the airways from France and elsewhere.
Figures rise, up, up. Spirits sink proportionately
It's as if I'm losing a love. No, worse,
a part of myself for twenty-one years.
Eventually it stops. The hammer falls.
Death sentence on ownership is passed.
All hope is lost. She's almost quadrupled
her reserve price, but how can mere money
compensate for the empty space I'll have to face
in the garage and in my heart?
'Well, we had a result there!' our agent
smiles, shaking hands with us and mistaking
these now falling tears for those of joy.
For how he know we'd let her go
not out of choice, but that increasing needs
for maintenance overwhelmed us?
Now, as we leave this fateful building
there are trailers everywhere
with happy buyers celebrating
their latest pride and joys.
And how it cuts me up inside
to walk away from mine.

Saturday 1 December 2012


crushing sensations.
narrow tunnel
dark as death,
turning red
like hell.
Primal fear
of change,
of Utopia

Blinding lights,
deafening roar
of sounds
Air pressure,
brain and tissue.
Sinking feeling
of vulnerability,
as fingers prod
and poke.
Lifeline severed.
Habitat stolen,
then destroyed
with afterbirth.

Plastic tube
tiny airway.
Agony of lungs
unaccustomed to air
over inflating.
of giants'
alien faces
hovering above.
I don't
like it here.
I want
to go home!

Water cold
on tender skin
washing away
last comfort
of amniotic mucus:
final caress
of maternal medium

Heart filling
with grief
Piteous yells:
Please please
just hold me?
Comfort me?
I am
so helpless,
so alone;
so lost;
so afraid.


Wednesday 21 November 2012


Consciousness was sucked
into the furiously spinning disc,
catapulting me back
to nineteen-eighty-five...
You were there.
I could look, but never touch - that
was denied me.
But, oh, how I looked!
How you shone, God-like,
in the eyes of the idolatress,
as you fought your sword fights
across dreams devoid of sleep
where I endlessly fantasised,
breathless with wanting - where
anything was possible.
And all others around you
faded away,
their voices silenced.
There was only you
in your Lincoln Green,
arrow poised in your bow.
And I became it's string,
responding to your touch
with paroxysms of rapture: and
just for an instant,
I thought I saw recognition
flicker in your eyes.
Did you really connect
with the chaos of this besotted Soul
from your future,
as you stretched her to capacity
then let your arrow fly?
And were you surprised
that she felt it all
so carnally?
Your arrow hit it's mark
in the Greenwood
deep inside me.
And the wounded Oak wept
sticky resinous tears
to the strains of Clannad's
'Robin, the Hooded Man.'
The magic was lost then
in the credits that crawled
slowly up the screen - a
fitting tribute to the death
of blissful reverie,
for I found myself back
in an existence so lifeless
without you.
But the afterglow still lingers...

(Photo courtesy of Google Images)

Monday 12 November 2012


Curiosity enticed me there. I spotted it while passing by on the M2.
Of colossal height, it dominated the landscape
for miles and I found it irresistibly intriguing.
Medieval knights were pathetic people:
forever coveting their neighbours' lands, were
never satisfied with their own no matter
how much they already held.
I felt a need to get inside their heads,
to understand how they could live with themselves
after inflicting such carnage on their fellow man.
So I took the next exit and doubled back,
then followed the brown information signs
until I eventually arrived at the castle gates.

Close to, it was a gaunt, gutted monstrosity
composed of time-worn greyish stone.
Unglazed windows, like the eyeless sockets
of some macabre decaying skull,
gave me a sense of impending doom.
As I ascended steep steps
to the keep entrance and ticket office,
the disturbing notion struck me
that if I entered there would be no going back,
that I'd be trapped in the fabric of this sombre place
for all eternity. I almost turned and walked away,
but a thirst for knowledge overrode my fears.

The audio tour transported
this second millennia psyche back
to Good Friday 1264, where crusader Ralph de Capo
was bravely defending his castle
against the onslaught of Simon de Montfort,
Earl of Leicester, and his men.
I paused the commentary for a moment
in order to picture the bloody scene
in my imagination.
Only the odd flitting shadow, and
a half-heard whisper issued from the unseen life
that lurked in every corner.
I was disappointed, had expected to sense more
in this place so steeped in history.

Turning a corner, I entered a narrow passageway.
In the dank semi darkness a young female
rushed clean through me in an icy chill.
A glimpse of long black hair and torn clothing
barely had time to register in my brain
before she leapt through a window
and fell to the ground below.
'Blanche!' I blurted out, wondering why I'd said that.
Fascinated, I turned back to the commentary,
then later discovered that Lady Blanche de Warrenne,
Ralph de Capo's betrothed,
was rumoured to haunt the keep
sporting an arrow through her heart.
But I saw no arrow, just
a desperate, suicidal young woman.

I ascended spiral steps to the battlements,
my mind still immersed in thirteenth century events.
Then I saw him.
Out of time - both theirs and mine - his attire
and longish flowing hair set him somewhere
in the nineteen-seventies.
He appeared 'high' on something.
Alcohol? Drugs? Perhaps both.
There was a suggestion of others with him,
a group of them.
'I can do it,' he slurred, 'I know I can!'
'Prove it then,' a female voice mocked, 'Just do it!'
He stepped over the parapet,
seemed to hesitate for a moment:
then knelt on the edge of the pigeon net
that spanned the entire top of the keep,
before carefully stretching out flat on his stomach.
The net bowed but held his weight.
My heart leapt into my throat as I watched him
slowly begin to edge forward.
His companions audibly gasped.
I wanted to shout at him to come back, but
found myself unable to either move or speak.
So all I could do was watch in trepidation.

When he was roughly halfway across, the net creaked
and began to tear. I saw the look of terror on his face
as he began scrambling on hands and knees,
desperately trying to reach the far side wall.
Just a metre or so from safety, the net bowed,
distorted into a grotesque shape
then finally gave way beneath him.
Screams from the others hung in the ether
long after they'd faded back into their own time.

Sick to the stomach, I rushed to the edge and looked over.

Thirty-odd metres below, through the now intact net,
I saw a young man in flared jeans gazing up at me.
The expression of bitter regret on that sad young face
was heart-breaking.
I felt such grief for his unlived years,
and deep sadness for the folly of youth
that had thrown them away.
And it really, really hurt.
The custodian later confirmed that there have been
two accidental deaths in Rochester Castle keep in
modern times.
One, in 2010, was that of a forty-year-old man
who fell from the stage during a concert.
The other, years earlier, fits the description
of the younger man I encountered.
However, despite extensive research on the Internet
I have as yet failed to find any record of this
earlier incident, only of the one in 2010.
So if anyone does have any knowledge of
either the accident itself or of the identity of
the man involved, then I would be so grateful
if you would contact me by email.
Many thanks


Wednesday 7 November 2012


I asked your expert opinion once
On my chosen dress for your party
Because in matters of fashion I'm a genuine dunce,
Whereas you are really quite arty.

You frowned as you looked me up and down,
Then you laughed out loud and said
That actually I resembled a clown;
Or, perhaps, more the living dead.

You explained that my makeup was far too pale
To be worn with so white a dress.
You said all I'd have to do is wail
And your guests would flee in  distress.

'That ghastly pallor is ghostly you see,
And your dress is too baggy and loose.
Plus you really should let your hair hang free.
When it's up you resemble a moose.

Such platinum hair needs a hint of gold
And your eyes need enhancing with Kohl.
Like me, you must learn to be more bold
And emerge from that self-conscious hole.'

So you accompanied me on a shopping spree,
Chose a catsuit in black and gold -
So tight I had to go underwear free.
For this image I felt too old.

'Nonsense,' you said, 'you're younger than me,
And now for some matching shoes.'
And the pair you chose couldn't possibly be
Any higher or my balance I'd lose.

Then in the salon my face was painted
And my hair tinted 'autumn gold'.
When I gazed in the mirror I almost fainted.
For me, this look was too bold.

But then who was I to contradict you,
The ultimate glamour snob?
So I teetered along that night with you.
But it was no easy job.

You plied me with cocktails until I was squiffy,
Then enticed me up to dance.
My heels were too high, the floor too slippy.
I never stood a chance.

The entire club was suddenly struck dumb
By the mortified heap on the floor
Whose catsuit had split from boobs to bum.
It couldn't have revealed any more.

Since then I've never ventured near
Nightclub, dance floor, nor you.
My colour's washed out and I tremble with fear
At the sight of a high-heeled shoe!

Wednesday 31 October 2012


Whether you believe it's true,
or you believe it isn't,
you're probably right...


Late August,
half past midnight.
A dense luminous fog
oozes from beneath
cemetery mausoleum doors
to roll slowly across the road
and into her garden,
gradually engulfing it
in opaque grey-green nothingness
that creeps ominously
up the house wall
and onto her balcony.

She wakes abruptly
from a nightmarish dream
to see him standing motionless,
so close to the locked doors
that his breath forms
a circle of mist on the glass.
His powerful, penetrating stare
paralyses her - she's
unable to move a muscle,
in spite of being acutely aware
of something probing the depths
of her consciousness.
A scream dies in her throat,
and she's compelled
to open the doors...


The night time has become
a million voices calling her.
One, far more bewitching
than the rest, sings a strange
hypnotic lullaby
that promises eternity;
drawing her ever closer
to his world.
The fog comes nightly now.
No matter how cold the air outside,
she makes sure her doors
remain ajar; for his
excruciating kisses
are tinged with an ecstasy
she has never known before.
She craves him
with an all-embracing hunger
that blinds her to the darkness
insidiously taking root
in the core of her Soul.


It's the debilitating weakness
that finally confines her to bed.
'Pernicious anaemia,' they diagnose.
'Complete bed-rest and iron pills,
combined with plenty of fresh air - so
keep the windows open at all times,
especially at night,' is their remedy.
(Although I'd have suggested
sealing them with fresh garlic
and crucifixes!
But this is century twenty-one
and no one believes
in folklore anymore.)

Why does no one listen
when she tells them
daylight burns?
Still they insist on opening
the curtains every morning,
in spite of these angry red welts
they can clearly see
appearing on the exposed flesh
of her arms and legs.
Their misguided response
is an accusation of  'self-harming'
and a demand for psychiatric assessment.

Her skeletal appearance
and zombie-like state,
combined with vomiting
when they force her to eat
convinces him that she's
'Classic text book case:
Eating disorder, most likely bulimia.'
Surely such a learned man as he
should realise she has no choice?
Solid food is no longer an option.


She passed away two months ago
and now lies buried
in the cemetery across the road.
Her devoted boyfriend visits daily.
He's here again this evening.
As the Sun sets, he whispers,
'I have to go now, my love,
but I'll come again tomorrow.'
And he lovingly places a bouquet
of white roses on her grave.
Suddenly, he's grabbed from behind
and a split second before long fangs
pierce his jugular
he glimpses two deep puncture wounds
in her lily white neck.

Cause of death:
'Unexplained heart failure - probably
brought on by grief.'
And his neck wounds?
'Accidental contact with rose thorns
as he fell.'

And to think we live
in such an enlightened age...


Friday 26 October 2012


Resting on  dusty rafters
in the attic space
cocooned in cobwebs
concealed by darkness
lies a wooden box.

Inside, the story
of a short life
written in love
wrapped in grief
lost in time.

Today, unsealed
a wound revealed
a need fulfilled
in reconnection
to a child.

A teddy bear
stained with tears
and yellow drops
of medication
that failed to save a life.

Graveside cards
stolen from wreaths
their heartfelt words
faded and lost
but not to this heart.

A pack of nappies
never opened,
a babygro
that never clothed
a tiny helpless form.

But most poignant of all
the umbilical clamp
white plastic encrusted
in dried blood.
Is it yours or mine?

If yours then this
is all I have
of a precious baby girl
who lived nine months
inside of me
but a mere two weeks
in the World.

And how these bereaved
and empty arms
long to hold you still,
but I guess for now
your teddy bear
as a substitute must do
and with these often falling tears
I'm counting down life's years
until my time on Earth is spent
and I'm reunited with you.

Wednesday 17 October 2012


I wonder how I got here
until sleep amnesia retreats
and I recall that strange night sky

last night, how the aurora borealis
reflected in eyes the colour of ice,
stirring sensual desires;

how I so eagerly took the hand
that led me here
to this Reykjavik hotel room,

knowing every conceivable fantasy
that girlhood dared dream
was about to be fulfilled...

Lying here beside you this morning
in this dishevelled bed,
disbelieving, I'm moved

to run trembling fingers
through your tousled white-blonde hair.
You stir in your sleep

then gradually awaken
to my awestruck gaze.
Smiling enigmatically

you throw aside the duvet
to reveal physical perfection, naked
but for the soft colourless body hair

that last night brushed against me,
electrifying already heightened senses
to the point of no return.

There is so much I want to say
but I cannot speak your language,
cannot tell you how it feels

as you take me again now
to those cosmic heights - and beyond
to utter rapture, where

I'm no longer conscious
of two-day-old stubble
prickling my face;

nor of these two hearts
pounding in unison
as if desperate to become one.

But, then, who needs mere words
when bodies are so fluent
in the art of communion;

so skilled in their own peculiar language
at expressing that most tender of thoughts
'I think I love you.'

And perhaps it's just as well
I cannot voice my irrational fear
that our hot volcanic passion

will melt you like the icebergs
I can see through the window
glistening in the early spring sun.


Saturday 13 October 2012


I am no parents' daughter ideal,
Not one to make them proud.
The proverbial sheep of black am I,
Controversial rebel "too loud."

I have no time for small-talk, etiquette,
Appearances or social mores;
And I'll never defer to elitist boys schooled
Behind closed Etonian doors.

Because who are these to formulate rules
When experience they clearly lack?
For how many of them have to scrimp and save
to put the shirt on their back?

Yet still they tax us right to the hilt,
Whilst feigning concern for our plight.
Do they really care about livelihoods lost?
I think not, for their future's bright.

So for this twenty-first-century girl
The revolution's begun.
It's time to take up verbal arms
And fight 'til the battle is won.

For I have this vision of a better life
Where there is no rich/poor divide:
No rulers, subjects, commoners or lords -
Just a Brotherhood Worldwide.


Friday 5 October 2012


Heart of granite
shattered by visual torment.
Displaced fragments amass in his throat
threatening to choke him.
His chin trembles uncontrollably.

Implosion of silent anger.
That such sentimentality could lurk
undetected in his psyche
is unthinkable.
Anger becomes blind fury - towards that creature,
but even more so towards himself.

What does this make him?
A soft man-sized mouse
with jelly for nerves - exactly the type
he finds repugnant
and has so often ridiculed.
And he an ex-boxer:
stereotypical hard man,
iron muscled with scars that tell
of a thousand fights hard-won.
When had he ever been afflicted
with feelings?
Not once.

Yet standing here now
in this rain drenched street,
shivering and confused, willing
these fucking tears to dry up
before anyone notices;
he's no more than a quivering mass
of raw emotion - no, worse than that -
of gut wrenching empathy.

And all because of the sight
of something so tiny, so helpless,
that closely resembles a map
of Australia.
A thing completely flat and greyish,
outlined in bright red;
that moments ago
was a frisky squirrel
playing dare with his speeding car.

Sunday 30 September 2012


Could a man so high-born, noble,
Even see a girl like me;
So low-born and unnoble,
Or am I just as air to you
Invisible but there,
Something you can look right through
Without the slightest care?

You passed me on the stairs today,
I had no time to hide.
I saw you turn your face away.
Will my presence you never abide?
It seems a governess pure and simple,
Unconnected, dowry free
And plain of face without a dimple
Is all you see in me.

Too often now you're far away
And oblivious to my heart's woe.
Oh how I dread your return one day
With the lovely Miss Ingram in tow.
For I've heard that you're soon to be engaged,
It's the talk of the servant's hall.
And I'm haunted by visions of you both unclothed
After the wedding ball.

How I wish I could be those things
That I can never be.
I'd make you suffer the million stings
That you daily inflict on me.
I'd be a lady of great power,
Of wealth and beauty too;
And I'd dwell high up in my ivory tower,
Unattainable to you.

Perhaps only then would you understand
How it feels to be me:
That although I'm far from a lady grand,
My feelings are the same you see;
For I have as much heart and Soul as you -
Thoughts and feelings the same.
So I can't help longing to be with you
And to someday share your name...


Thursday 20 September 2012


A homeless snail appears
out of eventide's gloaming.
Delicately ribbed body
in variegated brown
glistens beneath golden arc
of garden lantern:
slithers soundlessly, hunger-driven,
towards greenhouse larder.

Eyes follow your trail in reverse.
An indirect route map of silver
that plays with imagination.
Is it a Faery Path?
If I shrink and walk it
will it lead me into another World -
your World,
where I can learn your ways,
perhaps even earn your friendship?

For although in forms so utterly diverse,
this journey through life we share:
two Spirits woven from a single thread
of Sacred Divinity.
And I so love you, little brother,
and will shield you as best I can
from all the heartless barbarity
inherent in my kind;

whose lethal poisons would leave you writhing
in indescribable agony - your punishment
for needing to eat; and for offending
aesthetic sense of  'civilised' race,
who've decided you have no right
to sully 'their' beautiful land.
And they have the audacity
to call you abhorrent?

Little one, in your innocence I see
a beauty unique, unrivalled.
You have no eyes to see me
so I gently stroke your back, just
to say 'I'm here, and I care.'
You cringe violently - could it be
from the warmth of my hand,
or is it that instinctive fear
of human cruelty, common
to so many species on Earth?

And who could blame you if it were?
Limbless and with no means of defence,
you're an easy target for the Spiritually blind
who would delight in squashing you underfoot,
oblivious to what they're destroying:
an irreplaceable work of art
lovingly crafted by the hand of God.


Sunday 16 September 2012


To see your drama clearly
is to be liberated from it.
Ken Keyes Jr.

My love, I think this item, us,
a peculiar anomaly
of incompatibility that

is never mawkish, lovey-dovey, all show;
but like true life is flawed.
Gritty realism uncontrived:

bears scars of word and deed
that cut to the quick, drew blood,
yet somehow failed to kill:

is trampled and marred with threadbare patches
like an old Persian carpet
that can only wait, longing to be perfected

with compassion and exclusive loving attention
that only faithful minds bestow.
But ours are so easily distracted...

I glimpsed a couple in the street today.
Strolling hand-in-hand, they gazed
deep into each others eyes;

then stopped to kiss - and in that moment
nothing else existed for them.
Just you and I in an unlit window.

Sunday 9 September 2012


It all began as a bit of fun:
his secret weekly treat.
But never a day passes now
without furtively sneaking out,
avoiding detection by suspicious wife
while she's busy cleaning the house.

Closing front door, quiet as a mouse.
Very carefully does it:
mustn't crunch on the gravel drive.
Safely obscured by conifer hedge.
Now for freedom a desperate bolt.

Neighbouring houses, trees, stream by
in a dizzy blur of elation.
Distance rapidly increasing between
himself and feared detention.

Tingling from scalp to the soles of feet
that barely connect with asphalt,
as breathless excitement propels him on.
Supermarket, chemist, newsagents; all
rise up then retreat in a flash, while he flies

over Mediterranean sea in his mind
to sandy palm-shaded beaches,
where gentle blue waves lap the shores
and exotic cocktails await him.

The doors swing open and pure adrenaline
shoots him straight inside
with the full force of a strongbow bolt.
His eagerness he can no longer hide.

Proffering his Soul to a Deity in exchange
for wealth redistribution,
he slams his coins down, loud as thunder
on the bookie's dark green counter.

'Two pounds on Russian Boy, please Burt,
in today's two-thirty race.'

And, without a doubt, he's doubly sure
that this time he's onto a winner...


Friday 31 August 2012


Consider your life - has it
really been the catalogue
of disaster, annoyance and discontent
you believe it to be?
'Why is everything always against me?'
you often wail, 'Why is no one
ever on my side?'
your life is progressing perfectly.
You are simply being groomed
for Soul integration.
That is the purpose of physical life...

So your parents weren't exactly loving,
and encouragement appeared to be
an alien notion to them.
You felt overlooked, unwanted,
Yours was no accident of birth.
You chose those particular circumstances
in order to learn independence
and self-motivation.
The lesson was simple.
The difficulty: perspective.

And those school bullies
who made your life hell on earth?
Best friends in disguise.
Think for a moment:
who else could have taught you
to stand up for yourself
and your principles as effectively?
Or instilled lasting self-confidence?
When you're backed into a corner,
inner reserves have no option
but to rise up and save the day.
Didn't you turn out
to be much stronger
and able to stand your ground
than you'd ever have believed possible?

That demoralising first betrayal
in love?
what a lucky escape!
I mean, did you honestly want to be
stuck with a bore like him?
(Or any of those other self-serving
liars and cheats who followed
for that matter?)
Think of them as minute, insignificant squalls
on the surface of a bottomless ocean
of genuine love.
Instead of crying for weeks
you should have been out there diving deeper!

And failing those wretched exams
was no more than the blocking
of an inappropriate career choice.
There is no shame in being destined
for much greater things, and you know
that stagnating from nine-to-five,
seven days a week
in a solicitors office -
just to impress your parents -
would never have made you happy.

So, you see, your vocation as a human being
is to follow the promptings of Spirit,
while searching for the positive
in every situation.
Because each challenge you overcome
brings you one step closer to The Infinite.
Nothing ever happens by chance.

Above all, think of how little
these things will touch you
in middle-age
when you have arrived at your Greatness,
and can see in retrospect
life's lessons for what they were.
And no one will know, then,
how hard you once struggled
against the truth except, perhaps,
those who are struggling still:
those who sense in you a Kindred Spirit,
and search your face
for common ground.


Saturday 25 August 2012


Sometimes it just happens.
Seems like a good idea at the time.
I'm sure you get the picture:
It's been a bad day -
one of the worst,
and you've had it with everyone,
So you decide to go out,
to forget.
Here, there are a myriad of diversions
in multi-coloured cylindrical forms
that seem to say,
'We can make you feel good!'
And that's all it takes
So you succumb, all too easily,
to that exhilarating transition
into an alien world;
where walls are alive,
floors undulate and ripple.
And it's funny.
So funny.
You stumble.
Concerned faces loom over you.
their absurdity provokes
paroxysms of giggling.
You have to get out.
You need some air.

Golden globes that float
in a black Universe.
Dancing, swirling.
Trying to catch one
in your hands, but
the sidewalk tilts
forty-five degrees and splat,
you're flat on your face.
There's no pain, but there's blood.
A lot of blood.
It's dripping onto your hands,
making pretty patterns.
You stare at it,
detached, without wondering why or how.
It just is.

Iron railings
become a crutch.
You're on your feet
and begin staggering off
in what you hope
is the direction of home.
A car parked in the street.
Catching sight of your reflection
in a side window as you pass.
'Carrie', the movie,
comes to mind.
Your laughter dies.
You feel suddenly sick.
You lean against a wall for support,
only to slither back down
onto the pavement.
Cheekbones and nose are beginning
to seriously hurt.
Fumbling through contents
of your bag
for something to numb the pain.
A vodka bottle comes to hand.
You try to line it up with your lips,
but that hand seems to be a separate entity
that you have no control over.
Heavy glass bashes against tooth enamel,
knocking your head back against red bricks.
A pointless exercise anyway
because the bottle is empty.
But the beautiful red patterns
your hands make
on the smooth glass
remind you of
a Turkish Delight sunset.
And you smile,
for the realisation dawns
that you, too, are a part of this miracle;
just as it is a part of you.
And today no longer matters.


Friday 17 August 2012


Oh woe, oh woe,
It's raining again.
The sad sky is weeping
Cold tears for my pain.

It clearly must know
That you're leaving today
In your silver bird
To fly far away.

And does it know, too,
Who awaits you there
Behind pretty pink walls
In her Stockholm lair?

My trust you've betrayed
For, alas, it seems
You've abandoned true love
For ephemeral dreams.

So with broken heart
I make my way home,
Getting soaked to the skin;
Feeling so alone.

Saturday 11 August 2012


'She's a bit weird,' they said,
hurrying past her place as if being different
was somehow contagious.

A Green Man stood sentry by the front door,
and a miniature Stonehenge dominated
an unmowed, weed-conquered lawn.

Deadly nightshade and foxgloves grew profusely
along it's borders, and from the roof of her shed
hung bunches of drying herbs.

'She's either a Witch or a mad woman,' they surmised,
wondering if that freshly-dug patch of soil
might be the grave of some hapless victim.

She'd cast a spell on her next door neighbours,
they knew, because the daughter ran away;
the cat was run over; and then they split up.

That house had been on the market
for over six months as no one would touch it
because she'd been seen, they'd heard,
performing some sort of ritual in billowing robes:

wafting incense smoke over the fence
while chanting in tongues, ringing bells
and whirling like a Dervish.

'She should be locked away,' they concluded,
'from normal decent people like us:
not be allowed to roam free and corrupt
our children with her devilish ways!'

She packed her belongings and quietly departed
soon after those harsh words reached her ears.
And they patted themselves on the back with pride
for ridding their town of her evil presence.

New people live there now who tell
of amulets of love and healing they've found,
and of the tranquil atmosphere inside their home.

'She was a wonderful person - we really liked her.
We can't imagine why why she left,'
they say now, with averted eyes
and fingers crossed behind their backs.

And their words belie a nervous unease.
Do they truly believe themselves jinxed?
Or is it simply the working out
of a Universal rule that decrees:
Your every deed, whether good or ill
will return to you in kind - times ten?

Sunday 5 August 2012


The girl at the checkout
handed it to me.
It was part of my change,
that five pound note.
It stung my hand!
So I jammed it
into patchwork purse
and hurried home.

Safe in familiar territory,
with eyes closed
and mind open,
I took it out and held it
in receptive hand.

The blow to my chest
was debilitating.
Reeling, winded
and on the point
of collapse, I saw
the underside of a car
above me.
And the blood - so much blood,
spurting fountain like
from mangled thorax,
to drip ghastly strings of gore
from murderous metal ceiling.
Inside me,
crushed lungs
gurgled helplessly.
Absolutely horrified,
I threw it down.

It seemed an age before I dared
open my eyes,
pick it up and look.
When I did
I found the stain:
a huge sprawling patch
of faded sepia that
tainted the Queen's head
with tragedy.

I couldn't bear to spend it.
That would have seemed
somehow sacrilegious, like
robbing a Pharaoh's tomb.
So I wrapped it in silk
and buried it deep
in the womb of Mother Earth.

Then I prayed for your safe rebirth.

Friday 27 July 2012


I'm taking control of your senses, lover;
igniting your carnal fire.
Love or lust? Does it really matter,
as long as the species survives?

I've made you see a beautiful face
with a body that's Heaven on Earth,
where before you'd have only seen a girl:
nothing special, not remotely your type.

So here you are in the throes of passion,
as the fountain hits the orb
prepared by Nature for mid-month fusion.
And she cries out in my name, 'Oh God...'

Wednesday 18 July 2012


Be at peace and
See a clear
Pattern running
Through all your lives.
Nothing is by chance.
Eileen Cady

Modern feet treading
ancient coastal path...

Stepping carefully
near crumbling cliff edge...

Veering off now
into Rocky Valley...

To follow winding river
against it's flow...

Sensing every step
bringing me closer
to the Sacred...

A shrine of the Old Gods...

With it's Celtic
Labyrinth carvings
(1400 - 1800 BC)...

Placing my own offering
in gratitude for the blessings
of this life.

I thought I chose to come here today,
but now I see
it was the call
of Destiny.

Thank you so much
for joining me
on this Sacred Pilgrimage.

Blessings and Peace
be with you all.

Thursday 12 July 2012


The girl at the nightclub, the shiny chrome pole;
rainbow lights flashing to pulsating beat.
She spirals around, this human chameleon,
high up on her platform inside a glass cage.

She's sexiest of all the girls up there,
in sequined red shorts and transparent top.
Watch how she moves, gyrating those hips,
reptilian tongue flicking over full lips.

Male eyes are fixed on this agile temptress,
as alcohol-fuelled fantasies run riot inside
minds obsessed with erotica visual.
She's become their virtual whore tonight.

But to her this is just another night's work
to pay the bills and feed her young son.
And as she dances, her thoughts are focused
on a holiday to come in the California sun.

Friday 6 July 2012


Am I a mad woman
because I converse
with the unpeopled spaces
between tangible matter?
Many would say so.
But intelligences do lurk there,
are concealed in the molecules
of thin air: non-beings
more real than I am, in
my slowly disintegrating form.
For they are immortal.

They come to me in the silent hours,
these messengers from the World of Spirit:
these fleeting shadows that fall
across curtains and wardrobe doors.
But my partner wakes,
turns over in bed;
and they dart away
through solid walls, afraid
he'll learn, unprepared,
of the dishonesty
of five-sense perception.

Friday 29 June 2012


I cannot speak to you today.
No words of mine
can undo wounds inflicted
by the verbal sword of anger.
Memory will bear the scars forever.
Karmic debt is in the red.

I'm not much to write home about,
I know that.
Of course you'll find others more attractive,
more accomplished; much
more interesting.
I should learn to accept my mediocrity,
not hone it into a weapon
of us annihilation.
As if that could possibly
endear me to you more!

But I am trinity.
And yesterday, Ego declared war
on Divinity inside me.
Ego had glimpsed Divinity
through a chink in my psyche,
then found fragments of It's perfection
reflected in other women.
And it craved the admiration
such brilliance attracts,
mistaking that for love.
So it demanded it's own pedestal:
to be worshipped like them, as a
thing of beauty and desire - sought
self-worth in the opinions
of someone else.
It truly believed Divinity
to be something out there
that could be conquered and usurped.
But Divinity just smiled,
because It knew better.

I just caught sight of myself
in the mirror.
Ego's haggard, post-conflict face
is looking out at me.
But the eyes aren't quite right.
They no longer seem to fit the face;
have become beautiful,
entrancing almost.
I am inexorably drawn
into their bottomless emerald depths,
where I find Divinity nestling
at the core of my Being.
And trinity's warring factions
are finally fused into perfect unity.

I know now that I am OK
exactly as I am.
So are you.
So is everyone else.
And I can't apologise enough
for who I was
before today.

Saturday 23 June 2012


Painting by Ygraine Barrow 1995

San Marino Grand Prix
1st May, 1994

In team garage he puts on his helmet,
then pulls gloves on inside out - an
obsessive superstition of his.
Adrenaline begins pumping.

Easing himself into his car.
Starting the engine.
Now lapping the circuit
to take his position
at the front of the grid.

Formation lap commences.
Cars zig-zagging
to warm up tyres.
Engines revving.

Lining up for the real thing now.
They're all in position.
Tension becoming unbearable.
He can practically hear
more than twenty other hearts
pounding in unison
with his own.

This waiting is tantamount
to torture.
Mind focused ruthlessly.
Every muscle flexed
to the point of pain,
in preparation for insane dash
to stay in pole position.

Red lights flick on.
A cheer from the grandstands.
There's an uncontrollable fluttering
in his solar plexus.

He feels strange today:
sick, light-headed;
as if about to black out.
The vision of first place trophy
in his mind's eye
is inexplicably replaced
by brilliant white light:
The Face of God.
And just for an instant,
he's hovering high above;
looking down on himself
sitting motionless in his car.
There's a voice inside his head, saying,
'You are destined for greater things.'
Incomprehensible becomes crystal clear.
He's profoundly moved,
close to tears;
thinks of his family.

Green lights replace red.
His foot to the floor.
Ear-splitting screech
of engines pushed to the limit, then
BANG! Two cars collide.

He's uneasy.
Is reminded of yesterday's
death crash during qualifying
that he'd been trying so hard
to avoid dwelling on.
Anger grips him.
Why would no one listen
to his demands for change
in circuit safety regulations?
Do they want another death?

Pace car brought in.
Four frustratingly slow laps
that kill gear boxes and brakes.
He feels keyed up, irritated,
anxious to get on with the race.
'Why are such amateurs
allowed anywhere near a car? he demands
out loud in exasperation,
drumming his fingers
on the steering wheel.

Pace car veers off.
He tears away,
defending his position
with characteristic aggression.
He feels fated today:
that whatever happens,
he cannot possibly lose.

A few laps on.
Approaching the Tamburello bend,
he turns steering wheel to the left.
But a pair of ethereal hands
wrench it to the right, driving his car
head-on into the wall.
A blinding flash.
His girlfriends face.
Half-heard screams from the crowd.

But this is not the end.
I'm sure I glimpsed him
a few weeks ago.
He was standing in the road
just ahead of a bend
in the race circuit at Monaco.
A few seconds later
a car crashed,
after swerving at the last minute
as if to avoid him.
If it hadn't veered off,
there would undoubtedly
have been a tragedy.
That driver must have believed
he had a Guardian Angel that day...

Ayrton Senna was Formula 1's
last fatality to date.
Now, I think I know why.

Saturday 16 June 2012


Platform at Haworth station:
Her quest begins...

Crowded with tourists today.
Searching the faces:
a worldful of races;
every colour and creed,
size and shape of human being.
Seeking one, unique, distinctive;
dark, glowering countenance.
Emily's seductive, yet diabolical
literary creation.

He fits the description.
Tall, muscular, athletic build,
black hair; devil's eyes.
Has to be him!
Keeping safe distance,
mouse stalks the lion.

The moor.
He's heading for the moor.
Surely, this is him.
He'll be going home...
to find Cathy - or perhaps to hang
a litter of puppies
from the back of a chair.

Bravely catching him up.
No. An Italian accent,
not the broad Yorkshire
with a dash of Scouse
she so desperately wanted to hear.

Nor, after arduous climb
up steep moorland path,
is he at Top Withins.

Only three women here,
and half-a-dozen sheep.

Back down winding path
to Wycoller Hall.

He's bound to be there.
He'll have gone to settle
that old score with Edgar Linton.

Not here either. Just
a coachload of Japanese tourists,
a handful of Germans and a party
of French schoolgirls.

What now?
Running out of ideas.
Time to consult her 'bible',
a dog-eared copy of  Wuthering Heights.
Of course - Cathy's grave!
He's sure to be there.

Scouring ordnance survey map
for likely location.
There it is!
Small disused Georgian cemetery
bordering lonely Heptonstall moor.
A long stretch on foot, but
she may just make it before dark.

Daylight beginning to fade
as she reaches the summit
of rocky hillock.
There, just below her, ancient gravestones:
leaning like crooked, discoloured teeth.
And he's there!
Dressed in black, on his knees;
placing flowers on a grave.

Such long-awaited moment
brings unexpected terrors.
Heart pounding audibly,
she's tempted to run away.
'No. You've come this far!' she screams at herself,
silently inside her head.

A sharp intake of breath.
Then approaching him gingerly
from behind.
A trembling hand
taps him on the shoulder.
'Excuse me,' she begins,
without the slightest idea
of what to say next.

He stands up, turning to face her.
Not a trace of cruel, sadistic passion
in those soft brown eyes.
Nor in his warm smile.
'Hi, don't suppose you're
tracing your ancestors too, are you?'
He's decidedly friendly,
his accent unmistakably southern.
And she's bitterly disappointed.

But beyond the veil,
Emily Bronte smiles.