NaPoWriMo2015 – Do You Mind The Travelling? (10th April)

Do you mind the travelling?
Never ever.
Give me the car boot for an office,
the open road for a meeting room,
music blaring,
windows down,
sunglasses on,
let me be Don Henley’s dream
any day.
Give me the roadworks,
time for quiet thoughts;
I plan my shopping lists
on the M1 northbound.
Give me the radio for company
where I can boogie in my seat
amusing white van drivers
who honk their horns
and give me thumbs up.
That’s my kind of office politics.

But don’t you mind the travelling?
Even a little bit?
With every new road comes new ideas,
and every new building
gleams in the rain,
like a fresh, damp chalk board,
empty of history,
chock full of potential.

But doesn’t it bother you?
Staying in different places?
Not one bit.
Words flow freely in blank hotel rooms,
devoid of distractions,
where someone else cooks my tea
cleans up the mess.

But doesn’t it upset you?
Being away from home?


That’s a different question.
I think about the travel,
the music,
the road,
the hotel,
all of that,
to stop me
thinking about home,
because I miss it so much,
that my heart bleeds.
But being away from home
means I get to experience Coming Home
again, and again, and again,
with all of its welcome and wonder,
which I never take for granted.
And that,
more than anything
really makes the travelling worthwhile.


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NaPoWriMo2015 – ‘YES’ (9th April)

There’s nothing better
for relieving stress
than a phone call,
which simply says


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NaPoWriMo2015: Mrs Moses

This was inspired by Carol Ann Duffy’s wonderful collection of poems, The World’s Wife.


After the seas closed

and the manna was gathered in

Moses found it hard to sleep.

His wife beside him,

hand in hers each night

as he tossed and turned,

throwing back covers

as if they were blood soaked,

waking and staring

in unseeing horror.

‘The Red Sea, The Red Sea…’

he would moan in his sleep.

His wife knew

how he had stood watching

as the blood seeped

into the streets of Egypt,

pooling in the footsteps

of the Angel of Death.

She spoke with the scribes,

seeking wisdom and guidance.

They found the name

for their new legends.

She watched in despair,

as they hunched over their scrolls

turning their backs

on their saviour’s suffering.

She kept her solitary vigil,

Holding his hand in the darkness

While their candles burned,

drowning their pages

in seas of ink.

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NaPoWriMo2015: Shout Back

#NaPoWriMo2015: Shout Back

Your voice grates,
sparks in my head,
little shards of poison
sprinkled over everything
like parmesan,
making everything
taste exactly the same.
Cheese always did make me sick.

Nails on a blackboard,
cotton wool
pulled to little pieces,
chair legs
scraped over tiled floor.
Or those useless bits
of white padding
around electrical goods
scraped against each other.

I hate the sound
of all of them.
Almost as much
as I hate your words
in your voice.

I can’t silence you.
So it’s time to shout back.
Shout louder.
Shout better.
Shout more often.
Shout in good company.
A thousand voices,
all pointing one way:


We will starve you
of attention.
Drown you
with our voices.
Bury you
with the strength
of our intent.

We will be heard.
We are done listening
to the likes of you.
We are the masters
of our own stories.
We have voices.
It’s time they were heard.

Inspired by Project Shandy’s special Call for Submissions: Mental Health Awareness Week

It’s time to tell our own stories

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NaPoWriMo2015: Your Own Voice

When was the last time
you listened to the sound
of your own voice?
How long as has it been
since you heard
your own words,
rather than straining
for the replies?
Cowering before blows
shrinking before spite
hiding from hate
until we retreat into silence.
Do you catch your words
in your throat?
Swallow them?
Choke on them?
Spit out sanitized pips,
flesh of your meaning lost,
digested in your own acid.
How long has it been
since you truly heard
your own voice?




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NaPoWriMo2015: A Different Way

I am aware that this poem  is  a bit of a risk, especially to post on Easter Sunday, but bits of it have floated around my head all day and honestly – I couldn’t write another if I tried. This is not a hierarchy of live styles or faiths, just a comparison. My way works best for me, but it’s not for everyone. I have always said that while I don’t worship Jesus as God’s son, I do think he was a wise man who taught some good lessons that more people would do well to listen to and think about. I might not be a Christian, but there are aspects of the Christian life and lifestyle which I embrace and respect in my own way. 

On a technical note, I’m not sure the rhyming works, but this is how it came out. 

I don’t do the same things that you do
I don’t talk to God, I don’t pray.
I live my life by different standards
and do things a different way.

I don’t eat much chocolate at Easter
and don’t give up nice things at Lent,
I don’t say the Lord’s prayer at funerals,
(Though I do bow my head with respect).

I don’t give my cash to collections
or wear hats to cover my head,
I don’t sing the carols at Christmas,
and never say  prayers before bed.

I don’t worship Jesus as God’s son
but I do think he talked lots of sense
and agree that a life spend in kindness
is better than storing up pence.

I like that he walked with the lonely
and held out his hand to the sad;
I liked that he challenged authority
and aimed to change things which were bad

I liked that he dined with the hungry
and shared out the fish and the bread
I don’t worship Jesus as Gods’ son
But I learned from the things that he said.

I try to look after my family
and care for my friends when they cry
I know I’m not perfect or saintly
but when faced with a challenge, I try.

I don’t hoard my time or my money
I do think they’re better employed
I don’t dwell on shame or in sadness
And try to see life as a joy.

I greet each new dawn as a present
and aim to be better each day.
I don’t worship Jesus as God’s son
But I listened, and like what he’d say.

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NaPoWriMo2015: I am Woman, Hear me roar

I am woman.
Hear me roar.
I am daughter, sister,
wife, lover, friend.
But I am not mother.

I am woman.
I am creator, writer,
teacher, tutor,
guide through the wilds
of a wicked world.
Yet I am not mother.

My body
has born no life
save for my own.
It is far from barren,
it have given me to the world
in all of my guises.

I am woman
in all of my glory.
Feast your eyes
upon my skin and fur,
my curves and lines.
Look. Don’t touch.

See my flashing eyes,
claws and sharp teeth ready
to rip throats out of those
who attack me,
or challenge my pack mates,
though my womb
has borne no cubs.

My world is my family,
all creations and friends,
my loved ones,
by blood and choice.
They fulfil me.
I am no mother.
Yet I am woman.
Hear me roar.
Hear me roar.

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NaPoWriMo2015: Dear Today

Dear Today

I’m sorry, but this thing between us?
It just isn’t working for me anymore.
I know,
it’s hard to hear,
but somewhere along the way,
all the light and sunshine
went out of our relationship.
I never thought that we’d end up
in such a cold, dark place.
We started out so well together,
you and I.
Lying in bed for hours,
sunshine on our skin,
so much promise
and possibility
stretching out ahead of us.

But now?
I just don’t feel the same.
I hoped that taking a break from us
might reset things,
but sleeping a while
has only reminded me
of how different we are together,
of how much we lost along our way
and left the best of us behind.

Is there someone else?
I guess so.
I’m sorry.
Please don’t cry.
He’s called Tomorrow.

What is it about him?
Well… I guess he reminds me of you.
The way we were together.
In the beginnings.
He’s open to new ideas,
new possibilities
and the promise
of a beautiful life together.
I just can’t be happy here anymore
and I need to move on,
to think about my future.
I’m sure you’ll understand.
Perhaps we’ll meet again someday.

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NaPoWriMo2015: Doves to a Clear Blue Sky

Give your gifts freely,
if you give them at all.
Share happiness with others
without thought for your own
in return.

Set them loose
to spread joy
through your world,
like doves
into a clear blue sky.

Don’t use them as bait
for barbed expectations,
or carrier pigeons,
expected to return home
bearing messages
pre-scripted to the letter.

Thanks and gratitude
are pleasantries
not mandatory parts
of a bargain
never struck nor agreed
by the recipient.

If you sulk at silence,
wallow in betrayal
when your outpourings
run dry in response
Perhaps you should rethink
where your doves are released.

The clear blue sky will be empty
long after they leave your sight.
In demanding replies,
you conjure thick clouds
pregnant with sad rain.

Replies and smiles
are gifts too,
which mean more
when freely given,
not wrung out in bitter drops
in exchange
for material gains,
never requested,
politely accepted.

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NaPoWriMo2015: Erotica

NaPoWriMo2015: #1 Erotica

I pin my words to paper

as you pin my wrists above my head.

Every word

shaped beneath my will,

as my desire is stoked beneath your touch,

with every caress,

every movement against me.

I flick and tease sentences into shape,

mirroring each action

of your fingertips, lips, tongue.

Slowly at first, letter by letter,

then swift in a crashing torrent;

I write my stories as you write my passion,

held strong in black ink on white paper,

as I lie captivated

by you

in our bed.

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