An iceberg at the


Stoic ice
Packed tight
Reflecting away
Sun’s scorch

Then she smiles
And I melt



Picture credit:

Written for my week of Summer Lovin’ 🙂

Carpe Diem

My old Latin teacher taught us
Carpe Diem. “Seize the day”…

What nonsense!
I don’t know what things were like in Latin times,
whether their concept of day was
different to ours
(Did you know they had no word for “blue”? I digress)

But the metaphysical notion of “seizing” in the sense of forcibly grasping and holding in one’s hands one full rotation around the Sun…

that’s beyond me.

No wonder the language died out.
No blue sky thinking.



Picture credit:


The Weary Traveller

I’m back! Miss me? Don’t answer that 🙂

I’ve just taken a couple of weeks off to recharge the batteries, and deal with some things offline (including, fingers crossed, finding a job). If I’ve missed any amazing posts of yours, please drop me a link in the comments!

There’s going to be a few changes around here, but more on that next week. For now, a poem I wrote a while back, which seems to fit nicely. I’ve written a bunch of stuff while I’ve been away, so there’s plenty more to come – both poetry and 99-word stories. Of course, I didn’t write the things I’d planned to, but that’s becoming a recurring theme… A poet with too many ideas is like a dog with two tails!

**** A huge and heartfelt thank you to everyone who took the time to vote for me for the ABBA Funniest Blogger award – I am honoured to have even been nominated (even if it was ultimately in vain, grumble grumble 🙂 )

The Weary Traveller
The weary traveller has returned
From the confident kingdom of chronic confusion,
The undulating valleys of mild toothache,
And inevitable ophthalmic inquisitions.

He alone braved the long-ish night;
Withstood, insulated, winter’s whiskered whimpering,
And greeted summer’s salacious sun with solemnity,
Standing stoic as others frivolously frolicked.

He bears so many scars, niggles and nicks within, yet bravely sallies on,
Still travelling through each day,
In and out of narrative,
Towards destinations



Picture credit:

The Pool

In similar vein to yesterday’s poem about the Bus Poets…

Sitting behind scratched plexiglass
Thoughts swimming
Up and down the lanes

There, a furious front crawl,
Slapping the water aside,
Water as punch bag.

Underwater turns for a troubled mind.

A backstroke balladeer for a broken heart.

A part-time paddler,
Making progress through the pool
With neither style nor elegance,
But such determination.

Here, the measured breaststroke,
Gliding, barely rippling,
Poseidon’s progeny.

The ruddy and the ready,
Levelled in the water.

And I sit, and watch,
Tracing the cracks in the plexiglass
To the bottom of the frame.



Picture credit:


The Poets’ Bus

This is another attempt to push me out of my comfort zone, inspired by Billy Collins’ style. I’d love to hear your thoughts 🙂

The poets take their places,
Row by row, window seats and aisles,
And begin their meditation.

Words are worked, re-worked. Conversations replayed.
Ideas fizzing after the event, safe,
No arena to test them.

The poets sit. Stare dull out of the window,
Blind to nature’s beauty, focus internal,
Among but not with.

No eye contact. Eyes lie.
Better to retreat, cast that critical gaze inward,
Than to risk rejection.

The bus stops.
The poets file out courteously,
Knowing nothing. Learning nothing.



Picture credit:


The pigeons know all answers.
They taunt with each peck
I knew that
Could’ve told you
But never do.

They’re all around us, ignored.
Scuffed away when they come too close
Tossed crunchy crumbs on winter ice
if we remember.
Living off scraps.

We feel no empathy
Blind to their existence
Deaf to their know-it-all coos.
not like us.

But those pigeons have seen it all
From the caps of clouds to the soles of shoes
Salty seas to rusting rooftops
All of nature’s expense and expanse
They feel the answers.

We’re not asking.




Picture credit:

Madeleine (poem)

Crowding at the bar
The pressure of others.

Nose twitches.

That fragrance in the air,
That diverse, spicy blend

A momentary shock
Dropping under dark water

I’m back there
In that place

With you

Clarity undimmed by time
Regret magnified

This was written for Secret Keeper’s weekly prompt, using the words – pressure – diverse – fragrance – clarity – shock


Who Am I? (poem)

I don’t know who I am any more.

The mask has stuck fast
Public face absorbing private truth
Rictus grin fixed firm
All softeners and simpering
Homilies and ha-ha-has

Jargon and jelly beans

A rough diamond smoothed,
Ground to sand
Trickling through fingers that would claim it
Then hate-baked into a distorted parody

Dead eyes peer out
Locked into a part picked by past practice and present perfidy
Playing the role of a lifetime.
A life.

Hear my silent cries, the dry tears,
The balled-up fists beating against the invisible bars
In melodramatic stillness

I pause. This is me.

This has always been me.

Picture courtesy of / Creative Commons

The Depth of Skin (poem)

We all know that beauty’s only skin deep,
But sometimes – SOMETIMES – it smacks you in the face.
Demands attention.
Full attention.

Your eyes lock on, your tongue lolls low
Your heart beats that little bit faster.

You see her standing at the bar and your ego goes on autopilot
As your doubt dives for the door.
“Can I buy you a drink?” you say, as dashing and bold and unlike your normal self as that time you asked out Lucy Zeilinski at the football club social.

This beauty at the bar, the most beautiful by far,
With divine, picture-perfect porcelain skin,
A face to launch a shedful of ships,
Long legs, shapely hips
Easy smile upon her face,
Radiating easy grace.

She quacks.

You laugh deeply.

Beauty AND fun.

You think you’re in love.
Is this what it feels like to meet the one?

Faster. Faster.

Scenes flash by:
Passionate courtship
Exchanging vows
Holding her hand as the twins are born,
Giving your daughter away in a stylish society wedding as your wife, your beautiful, beautiful wife, smiles on with doe eyes as loved up as they were in this moment of meeting, when two particles met in the cold vastness of an empty universe and bonded instantly, feted by the stars, lauded by the poets, the greatest, most beautiful love, enduring through the ages, as smooth, taut skin sags and wrinkles, hand-in-hand, together, through all life’s seasons.

Then she quacks again. QUACK!

Doubt comes running back, accompanied by its bosom buddies, self-loathing and self-pity, and I flee as awkwardly and rudely, as Lucy Zeilinski at the football club social.

8125512050_c9e7f26468_m / Creative Commons