A Winter caution

Leave the berries for the birds to eat
They’re poisonous and none too sweet.
Though red and round and juicy-looking
Even with a lot of cooking
These will make you feel quite ill
So heed me child, and do not steal
What God did not create for thee!
I’ve told you once, now let them be!

A slip of the tongue

Marry me! Cried at a vuln’rable time
Between couples provokes many things.
Though these words of themselves can be hardly a crime
Repercussions wreak havoc or rings.

For if spoken too soon, these two powerful mots:
Burly men tend to swoon, then to cut loose the ropes
And escape from the one they have just kissed goodnight
Before they feel the noose round their neck grows too tight.

But when this proposal comes all in good speed
And the other’s agreeable, vows it can breed.
Then the lovers cement with the promise they make
What in likelihood started as a small mistake.

Song of the mistress

I wait by the phone for your ring.
It’s foolish, but here is the thing.
Although you have her and life isn’t so tough
It seems even perfect girls aren’t enough.

Why lie to yourself on your wedding day’s eve?
If you truly loved me, it’s her you would leave.
But somehow you’ve woven this web to suit you –
Get to marry the cake, but you still eat me too!

I love you too much to demand that we wed.
So it’s her with the ring, but me in your bed.
Just how did things go so surprisingly wrong?
I gave you my heart to be trampled upon.

You love me, admit it! I see that you do.
In hiding the truth, who’re you fooling? Guess who!
She’ll hate you for lying and leading her on.
But she’ll win in the end: If you love me, be strong!

The honeymoon’s over, she’s pregnant, you say?
Well my deepest condolences. Now, go away!
You have quite some nerve waltzing back here to me
After three weeks of sun, sand and sex by the sea.

What am I doing? How did we get here?
In love and adultery nothing is fair!
Now three children later you’re out on your ear
And trying to crawl back to me now, I fear.

True love lasts a lifetime, yes, this much I know.
Or I would have shown you the door long ago.
So my hands are tied, why, what else could I do?
I’m finally getting to grow old with you!

Growing Pains

The times are a changing
I know this is true
My youth passed unnoticed
You grew older too
We’ve shared much of life
Laughed and cried as was due
Now I find that I’m ready
To settle for you.

The wandering eyes
Itchy feet and all that
Which was part of my younger days
I will give back.
Now my passport and heels
I will trade for a flat
With your socks on the floor
Perhaps even a cat.

My roving days over
I’m settling down
No longer for clover
Must I go cross-town.
If I promise to nevermore
Wear this red gown
Will you swear to me never
To cause me to frown?

We’re wrinkled, well-travelled
And long overdue.
It’s time we grew up
And responsible too.
If you’re good to me
I’ll be so good to you
With a cooker, a car
And an en-suite for two…

A Haunting Spot

I smiled at the man who had turned up to tea,
Though out of the blue he’d appeared.
He seemed wistful and sad when he sat beside me,
When I spoke to him, he turned and stared.
So I plucked up my courage, began to relate
All the funny events of my day.
And as he braved a smile, so the breeze did pick up
‘Til the willows were starting to sway.
Then how we both laughed, at the ways of the world.
I was pleased that my tales made him grin.
And we stayed sitting there, on a bench in the cold
As the evening was drawing in.
Then he turned with a sigh and his primary air
And remarked at how sorry he felt
That I soon would be leaving him lonely out there
As he spoke such words, my heart did melt.
For he looked in my eyes and the fondness I saw there
Did take all my breath quite away.
And he thanked me for letting him share in my life
For he’d had a most pleas’rable day.
And as it grew dark and we walked hand in hand,
He turned one last time and we kissed.
Then I opened my eyes to the streetlamps aglow
As my handsome young man turned to mist.
I was terrified, sure, as I ran for the door
For my beau had dissolved in my arms.
And I never, not once, had expected to find
Him a phantom, of such mortal charms.
Now I often do sit by myself for a bit
On the bench we shared, down by the stream.
But never again has he come for a chat
And I wonder now, was it a dream?

Nighttime conversations

Sometimes I talk to spirits that come in while I’m asleep.
It must get lonely as a ghost, quite often they will weep.
But others tell me stories of far-off distant lands.
Of things they did while of the earth; how life is hard to plan.
I listen to adventures, hear books I’ve never read,
But somehow upon waking this gets trapped inside my head.
It’s hard to talk to people – they rarely want to hear.
Some smile and nod, but mostly they just run away in fear.
When young, I used to wonder why all adults told lies.
They’d swear to me they couldn’t see what’s right before their eyes.
But now as I grow older, I understand their fear –
If they admit they see them, then they must exist, my dear.
And if, in truth, these beings are trapped here once they’re gone –
Perhaps in time we too will share their fate, go on and on.
Yet still it seems a pity, with wisdom they could share,
To tell us not to trust our ears and eyes, or ‘talk to air’.

The daydreamer is brought back down to Earth with a thump

Stolen from my chosen world. Reality arrives with a rush and a whimper. Staring blindly at the hand before me, all faces turned to chart my progress. Wagers placed, the unimaginative betting on the surety of a telling-off. The dreamer castigated for thinking outside the box, outside the hell of thirty sheep, all following one who refuses to lead by example. Do as I say, don’t do as I do. You have to pay attention. Stick with the mundanity of life, it will bring its own rewards. What rewards? What is my motivation not to fly the scene on a broomstick, long hair whipping in the wind and cackling in a self-congratulatory manner? I lack stimulation. I have rarely found the company of sheep to be adequate in this regard. But you must want to conform, fit in, be molded to the cast of social splendour. The government wants more scientists. Well pardon me, please, for having an opinion, but my talents lie elsewhere. I suspect the government really, deep down, desires something far more exciting – more dominatrices, more cheese and mustard sandwiches, more sex, but it’s pointless explaining such things to most adults while one is under the age of ten. They tend to be so shocked that one can think, that the content of any message is lost amid cries of ‘Sacrilege’, as the alarm bells sound and they call in the men in white coats to ask embarrassed questions about your relationship with the world around you in a crude attempt to discover your emotional handle. A label is most helpful to those members of the red-tape brigades who cannot cope without a filing system. It allows them to hide their fear of you in a little box. Somewhere between Arachnophobia and Necrophilia lies a little drawer with my name on it, encircled by a thick chain and multiple padlocks. It is time to break the locks and melt the chain, free the spirit and allow the daydreamers to solve the world’s problems. Protocol will only get us so far, as we keep edging ever-closer to the big red button that could end it all in a heartbeat. No daydreamers would press it for curiosity’s sake, as we have clearly imagined the consequences. Clearly and in technicolour!

Of Shadows and Consequence

Magic and mystery, people do say
Cannot be ‘stood in a year and a day
For reason is hardly a weapon that’s fit
To dig a deep hole – reach the bottom of it.
So first you must study some musty old tomes,
Learn spells without cause, try to rattle the bones.
A sortilege-seeker next you will become
With the bang of a gong and a meditate-hum.
You’ll start to see spirits, and hear things at night.
Some voices bring comfort, yet others, a fright.
But never again will you fancy yourself
To be home all alone with the books on the shelf.
And if it’s a mastery that you would seek,
Hear ye this now, heed the warning I speak!
For Pandora, though ever a curious piece
Once open’d, found never again would know peace.
Her conjuror’s box, though enticing at first
Then took on the weight of a burden, a curse.
But knowledge is power, I hear you declaim,
Please listen, sit down while I try to explain.
Once started upon the path you would rush down
It will not be possible to turn around
So be very sure that you’ve made up your mind
Or you may not enjoy what it is that you find.

Where a battle is fought in love, there can be no victor

And she wept long and hard
For the love she had lost.
She felt keenly her heart
Must feel keenly the loss.
But she never did pause
To ponder her fate
For ’tis better to mourn
Than consider the wait.
On the other hand, he,
Not accustomed to pain
Chose to keep his good cheer
And think on it again.
Thus they grew far apart
In their aiming to keep
Their love like a river
Flowing slowly and deep.
Now her eyes are quite dry
As he looks on, bemused.
Little time has gone by
And yet he is refused?
For the clock has run down
Wanting winding, you see.
And where once was love
Lies a strange fantasy.

Verbal Rambling

Missing, like the cool breath of spring with the windows sealed and the heating on. I looked everywhere, but could not find what it was I sought. Eventually I was drawn outside, away from my safe haven, comfy cocoon, nest of nostalgia. Drawn outside to the vast emptiness of grey. The buildings, trees, sky, pavements, even the people, leached colourless with the daily grind. Scrabbling to inject a small painted eddy with each gossip magazine, buying the gospel according to St. Vogue, Cosmo, Heat, in a vain attempt to reignite a spark of something to warm the outer echelons of wasted grey matter in their meaningless, empty, automatic existence.

Chakras blaring, I slice through the crowd in a beam of light, airy red and green, pausing to gaze at the signs, tripping over my feet and smiling gaily at the blank, vacant stares of astonished and outraged indifference. I pass them by.

Still searching, still questing, thirsty for something more than the cold, consumer products that continue to be supplied without demand. Unnecessary. The limp sandwiches, curled in their cardboard, and the leaky coffee cups uncomprehending in their crassness. And I feel embarassed for them, these minor distractions. They clutter us up, steal spare time, waste our dreams, anchor our wanderlust and tie our shoelaces together, sending us tripping, tottering off balance until our world only appears normal when viewed from the appropriate angle.

Bent out of shape, the life collects at a corner, in little pockets, much like a zit, cheerfully growing bigger and more bountiful until some officious teen decides to squeeze it to death, and creativity is lost, scattered to the dusty ends of the earth like pus exploded on a mirror. Distasteful, too much life – suppress it, cover it up with beige face paint and pretend it’s not there. Censorship, by the people, for the people. And my itch only grows, it seems. In inverse proportion to all attempts to squash it, until it is so big it no longer needs a soapbox, or a rooftop, but is ready to take on the world even without us. I sigh, acknowledge the digression, give myself a little shake and return to my path.

Oh, for my own wooden wanderings. I choose freedom over falsehood, yet build upon the cold, hard, steely-eyed framework of society. The foundation garments of rebellion, are now to be worn outside the ashen trappings of civilization.

The glade of flowers must exist within the sharpened wolf-ridden forest and perhaps it is that this little red riding hood is looking for? Stab to the heart of a problem and find only dust and bones. Soothe your way in and discover a wealth of living warmth. Fondant moisture, unsuspected, lurking in the depths. Yes, depths. The world suddenly takes on a third and an other dimension, and I find myself satisfied, my thirst slaked, comfited at the glorious mystery of which I have partaken. Colour and light bursts forth around me and I am renewed. The world shifting and righting itself upside-down.

Things settle to a more comfortable location. Tesselations occur, interacting and teasing in their kaleidoscopic patterns. Turned on their ear, yet righted, I continue to turn in the world’s wake. A spinning top, all colours blurring to an all-feeling brown of newness.

I love.