On Sleep

I lost count of sheep

couldn’t quantify cattle

quietly slipped off

~

CLP 20/06/2021

Dream #23

unable to speak

shouts stifled at source

legs bound, arms held

this is not what I came for

how do I wake myself

when so constrained by sleep?

will it end like this?

drowned in white light?

in silence?

~

CLP 20/06/2021

Dream #22

Which bed is this? I wake unsure

no standard hotel shape to reassure

my musty head is somewhere secure

familiar start to a new day

with an unfamiliar face

who has just pulled close the door

behind her I hold a memory

of shapes and words recalled too late

that was not her name

she was kind enough

not to complain

we both had our reasons

not quite the same

as my dear friend once explained

everyone has their own

Love story

~

CLP 19/06/2021

Dream #21

heavy rain’s half-time shuffle on the roof

mixes with the jazz ostinato beat

of towering street lamps flicking by

wheels slip over pools along the carriageway

sheets of spray from trucks misting view

red rear lights, pairs of dazzling white

approach, recede

dashboard indicators green

there’s a song replaying on the radio

today becomes yesterday

00:00

as soon as tomorrow becomes now

vehicles stretch apart, further apart, disappear

then this is the last one tracing the road

deep into the city’s orange glow

pointless waiting at crossroads for change

illuminated arrows pointing home

weighed down by the return of gravity

I step through the door

the post on the hall floor

dates how long I’ve been away

a web loose-hanging at the window

holds small black silk bundles

where the spider’s been making hay

~

CLP 18/06/2021

Love #1

I miss you, Grandpa

opened the dusty window

turned the rusty key

~

CLP 16/06/2021

Café Writers’ Society

I am very grateful to the lovely people at the Norwich based, Café Writers who have selected ‘Time #1’ as Poem of the Month for June 2021.

Time #1 can be found here on this blog too, the post having been published on 13th June 2021.

The society has substantially extended its boundaries thanks to the Internet and so it is an honour to be featured on the website given the choice they have.

Keep an eye on the Café Writers for regular online (and hopefully soon, in person) events.

As ever, thank you to everyone who follows, gives comments, feedback and encouragement to me x

~

CLP 17/06/2021

Dream #20

you know, this thing that didn’t happen

anywhere but my head, seemed real

I remember everything about it

conversation, colours, the amazing food

all the personal touches

every sensation, but smell

smell? nothing.

I thought nothing of it until I was asked to leave

as I said, it seemed real

but without a scent of the place

without that, I knew something was wrong

I thought I could smell a rat

~

CLP 16/06/2021

Time #2

robin, sparrow, pigeon

motorway, next door’s children

blue sky, white walls, dawn bright

silver birch shine, heat of sheet

sourness of sweat, weight of limb

heavy head, weary heart

click of clock, click of clock

click of clock, laughing gull

~

CLP 16/06/2021

Dream #19

flying with brothers and sisters

screams of joy

uncontrollable giggles

screaming with brothers and sisters

pained by absence

collapsed in holes of grief

uncontrollable brothers and sisters

scoured by loss

wandering like orphaned kittens

absence of brothers and sisters

~

CLP 15/06/2021

Time #1

when it’s been really hot

like today, close to the mid-point of June

eventually the blue begins to thin

as if mixed with a few drops of white spirit

.

the air moves a little faster

adding cool to shade

under the solitary oak

crowning the rise

.

arrhythmic sounds of a distant road backwash

strangely vigorous mid-afternoon songs of blackbirds

who call as if expecting rain

but it won’t, not yet

.

there is no accumulation of clouds

over the Blackdown Hills

just the wind seasoned by a dash of brine

chilled through months of swirling winter tides

.

provoked, other birds respond, goldfinches

keening for respite from potential drought

trying to sweet -talk moisture from the sky

to fill the hard-set hoof prints and tyre-track hollows

.

to soften the soil and freshen pasture

to fill the brook now wearing a skin

that barely covers its old bones

its smoothed stones lie dry, matted green

.

heading west into the breeze

every feather extended to the full

a buzzard floats along the hedge

then shifts its path toward the wood

.

I sit against the towering trunk

spine aligned to its hard rutted bark

listen to the plaintive songs

wonder at how fast my sixty years have gone