On Memory

A tune filtered through

Happy chatter, chink and drink

“…holy ground once more”

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n.b. The other night a song played by the Irish folk band in a bar in Southsea, from an album we listened to as children, before we had the wherewithal to buy our own, caught my brother’s attention. The Clancy Brothers and Tommy Makem album, bought by my father, featured a great love song, “Holy Ground“.

Hearing it being played through the talk of the bar, my brother said, “We know this one!” We did, from childhoods more than 50 years previous.

The magic of music. I could see the record player; the cabinet it sat in; the room it sat in; the view from the window; the house; the memory of singing along.

CLP 16/02/2020

I Kissed A Girl

Today’s her birthday

I was five and she was too

It wasn’t to be

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n.b. Memory is triggered by so many random details. I recall the playground ringing to the chant, “Christopher Perry kissed….(insert name here)!”

I apologise to her for being so forward. Totally unacceptable behaviour on my part. I was out of order. No excuses. I think I have learned my lesson, although it took a while. Attitudes and behaviours learnt young need early challenge.

My elder sister had never been so embarrassed in her life. She made that quite clear.

CLP 12/01/2020

On Land

Dog watching man plant garlic

Strong dirty fingers

Firmly press the ripened bulb

Deep in damp dark soil

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n.b. Our essential connection to nature begins with getting our hands dirty as children when we play outside digging. As we do so we build our natural immunities through our exposure to the earth.

Immense pleasure can be derived from using our hands and fingers to push into the soil, open the earth and planting next summer’s crop.

I recently planted one hundred garlic cloves. Each bulb containing a piece of nature’s magic that will more than fully repay the invested effort. As I placed the cloves into the soil I imagined their subterranean uncurling and the fresh green shoots pushing up into the air and sunlight. I wonder how many will make it to the kitchen this year?

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CLP 02/01/2020

Happy

Her smile is wider than her head

A photo shows this when she was ten

Her brilliant eyes then shone so bright

Her teeth gleaming in black and white

And still after many colourful years

When distant childhood memories may bring on tears

She has that smile as wide today

What might spark it I cannot say

But it reveals like an evening primrose bloom

A late afternoon sunburst that fills the room.

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CLP 19/11/2019

On Memory

There it was, so close

Reflection of something past

It’s known it was known

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n.b. Whatever it was is not so important, but not being able to recall it creates a new reality; the understanding that time has been stretched so thin that gaps are appearing in its fabric. Like a fleece that has been stretched too far, holes are created that themselves will become forgotten when the yarn is spun.

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CLP 06/06/2019

Beach Day

Somebody said “It’s going to be sunny!”

We went to bed excited at the prospect

Each swimming in expectations whisked up with childhood memories

By morning, (time off already booked at the last minute) we drew back the curtains to steel grey sheets of cloud

To a steady pitter patter on a tin roof

To the cast iron bite of a northerly wind

“Highest temperatures today could touch eight degrees centigrade” said the radio station news anchor

We made our sandwiches, packed the car and set off to the seaside

To join the gulls and cormorants squinting through drizzle

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n.b. British Public Holiday weekend

n.n.b. It turned out to be a beautiful day

CLP 04/05/2019

Emotional Blackmail

“I just want my kids to be happy”

So commonly heard

So unthinking said

And missing the point

Of parenthood

And childhood

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“I don’t care what he does, as long as he’s happy”

What the children know of their parents

Who want them just to be happy

Is that they hold the keys

To all the doors

Well before they’re eighteen

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“I’ll do anything for my babies”

Who soon learn that to sulk

Is to take control

Mumnipulate

Dadominate

Power without responsibility

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“I don’t know where we went wrong”

So commonly heard

So unthinking said.

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n.b. Happiness is a derived emotional state that seems to come from a sense of being at ease amongst those you respect and share purpose. Hence the attraction of online gaming and gangs. Happy families it appears to me, do things together, rather than just being an altar for feeding the children’s egotistical pleasures.

NaPoWriMo 2019 Day 20 prompt: Use speech commonly heard.

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CLP  20/04/2019