Category Archives: New Poetry

Defenceless – Michael Harris

It served for a time
but not any more –
it thwarts me now.

It muddled thought
but not any more –
I see clearly now.

It dampened emotion
but not any more –
I feel my feelings.

It dulled sensation
but not any more –
I’ve come to my senses.

It doubted intuition
but not any more –
I trust my gut now.

It offered protection
but not any more –
it endangers me now.

It served for a time
but not any more –
life serves me now.

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Sheltered – Pat Francis

‘You won’t want to go to the funeral’
my mother told me, and turned away.
I spent the day with neighbours.

I didn’t see the black cars come,
my pink-loving mother in black silk,
straight-backed, silent. I didn’t see

his comrades from two wars,
straight-backed, black-banded,
form a shocked guard of honour.

I went back to school, carrying
a black ball of grief I had not
been shown how to handle.

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Snail’s Progress – Peter Francis

(for a likely pair of pilgrims)

Sweeping with poised antenna left and right
A snail crawls across the red tarpaulin.
He does not know he makes himself a target.
Touch and smell, the senses of the skin
Are more to him then colour is, or light.
His minute eyes no larger than a pin
He cannot know how soon a bird in flight
Might trap his succulence and take him in.

He’s never changed not since that primal birth.
Still walks on his stomach and on his back
Carries a house, his  refuge and a burden.
He will survive when we’ve all quit the earth
To bundle on lime walls and leave a track
Of slime that shines like silver in the sun.

I watch him with my God like stare
And think we make a likely pair.

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The Voice Speaks – Martin Choules

(In reply to Rupert Brooke’s The Voice)

Late in the dusk, in the ancient woods
I saw a poet on my stroll
In desp’rate search for solitude,
At one with all and deep of soul.

I bid him “Ho” and “What a view !”
But he just sighed at ‘one-of-those’.
From lofty heights, his dagger-eyes
Shot down along his haughty nose.

So strange, we took so diff’rently
To seeing beauty silver-pearled –
When I see set a sun so soft,
I want to share it with the world.

I guess for really clever chaps,
We little people must appal –
There’s some so full of inner peace,
They need no other folks at all.

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New Year Arrival – Pat Francis

The year came in with snow
and birth pangs. I was afraid
of icy roads. A sour-faced nurse,
glass in hand, greeted our arrival
to the sound of bells.

Alone all day with a new baby
I was fearful. Trees in the park
hung heavy and white, endless
winter; no pushing a pram
through frozen paths.

Alone all day with fretful crying
I felt guilty, heart heavy with love.
When my mother smiled, the baby
smiled back – his first time ever.
My smiles were frozen.

Spring, like hope,
deferred its arrival.

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Love Birds – Martin Choules

February, when the end of Winter
Greets the start of the start of Spring –
And what better time for ravens to be mating,
For early-birds to be doing their thing ?
Valentine ravens, tender and dear –
Mating-for-life for year after year.

Coming out of the edges of the wilderness,
From the Northern moors to the middle-class downs –
Now nobody frowns on their loving anymore,
So they do it in the open and they do it in the towns.
Valentine ravens, cawing their love –
A far better symbol than a teddy-bear or dove.

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Native Wine – Doig Simmons

A glass of native wine to drink.
Opened my eyes and made me think

I saw the future and the past.
The distance between them truly vast

That dark void – the linking chain
Echoed briefly with my name

I saw things I ought not see
But which were clearly naked me

It cleared my sight, I saw her plain
The eternal ‘she’ who has no name

I looked into those deep green eyes
There, to my great surprise, –

Was love.

Doig. Ealing. 2018

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