The Three Women

This poem came on the 5th May 2017. It is in honour of, and with high regard for, the lives of Ingrid Beazley, Rosemary Beazley and Brenda Joughin.

May they rest well. Deservedly so.

 

The Three Women.

 

Maisie and I tumbled  and blew up the mountain.

Carningli, grumbling in the wind blown heat.

And I laid three bunches of posies from Penrallt

At the cairn, where others too are remembered,

A horse shoe, soil from Sicily and the USA,

A small plastic goat,

Fragments, incomplete.

 

Set the flowers down amidst the small rocks

As crows swept across, in shrouded flight

Jinxing their way towards Morfa Head,

the sea below them

indigo saltwater blue,

silver trailed, swirling,

dancing ever towards the Westerling  night.

 

Three women,

today, your lives we celebrated.

You are resting, sleeping, beyond age and now,

by life’s sometime trials,

untainted.

 

But you were :

Workers, mothers, sometimes warriors,

Creators, comforters, wives and wise,

lynch pins of this vexing world,

in your own,

differing ways.

 

The flowers are flags, splashes of colour to lighten our darkened world,

Honouring you lives, your loves,

the canvasses on which you so vividly painted,

across the years, the months,

the  weeks

the days.

 

We turn away now.

Homewards bound.

This May afternoon is muted, hushed.

Thrift, gorse, bracken splashed.

Splintered with sunlight.

Quietened by your passing

and by our loss of choices.

We, your family,

your friends,

your devotees.

 

And yet, perhaps,

now and then,

we will hear your voices,

enraptured, kaleidoscoped,

catch your cries of delight.

Lingering still

on the hot breathed breeze.

 

 

 

 

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My angels were singing

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(the view from Carningli. Newport Bay Pembrokeshire. photo by MM)

 

My angels were singing : a poem for St David’s Day

 

This poem was conceived over a a few spring like days, during February 2008 – out walking the dogs, watching the birds, and thinking of those who have died, who do – I believe – watch over us.

Nearly 10 years on, I am still fortunate indeed to live and love in a most beautiful part of Wales, and, in my opinion, one of the loveliest places in the world. This is, I reckon, my ‘go to’ poem!

 

I stood near the house

where Grace once lived,

My angels were singing.

 

I watched as birds

and daffodils dived.

My angels were singing.

 

It’s spring and the sun

bursts fat and alive.

And my angels were singing.

 

Old crow, silhouetted against Carningli rock,

purple shadowed on blackened burnt bracken,

gorse and heather reeling :

the after shock.

But my angels were singing, still.

As seagulls wheeled across the bay,

catching sea breezes,

tumbling at will.

 

The Irish Sea lies beneath

becalmed and silvered blue,

and my angels were singing.

 

Wales’ favourite saint remembered

the new season breaks forth, springing,

flowers dancing, church bells – ringing.

His angels – singing.

 

Seasons, people, live and die,

here and now is for the living.

But remember those you love or loved –

do try.

And let your angels be singing.

Let your angels be singing.

Dydd Gŵyl Dewi hapus


The Dog Star

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For

Phoebe, the dog star.

 

(i) The joy of running.

 

A bolt from the blue,

A golden arrow streaking , skirting Newport bay

Effortlessly matching sand sail and surf.

A pimple, possibly canine, on the farthest horizon

was enough to take you away,

bullet running, wide pawed dancing.

Find the fiercest dog you could – and make it chase you!

You and Maisie rising and falling like dolphins

in the meadow sweet, long grass of summer.

In Wiltshire woods the intoxicating frustration of putting up deer,

glad running into the copses,

thundering through bramble and bracken,

off, into the dim distance.

Leaving us with the panicky emptiness of the long wait.

half an hour, maybe more,

then you would appear, purple tongue, seemingly a mile long,

hawking for breath, flat out on the green downs.

 

(ii) A wolf god.

 

Eyes, soul pooled,

kohl lined.

Anput, Egyptian dog princess,

Pharaoh dog, friend to Anubis.

Easy humoured,

curious,

strong willed and sublime.

Inscrutable, imperious,

Ready beauty,

indisputable.

 

(iii) The ghost dog.

 

Nothing here of your decline,

just the final, dreadful, sting.

Hot teared night, tumbling on your velvet snout.

Earth drenched, she sleeps, soft blanketed.

A grave peppered with violas and first daffodils.

Now, a ghost dog walking with us.

Through Pengelly woods, wintered, mulched and mudded.

Teifi Lakes spiced with snow.

The estuary, silvered, flat calm and kind.

The pine forest near Lampeter, muffled.

Is that you?

A shivering movement amidst the trees.

A backwards glance, somehow you fill the space.

A muted howl of greeting, a murmur on the breeze?

 

(iv) Someday.

 

We too will be scattered skywards,

dark skies and moonbeams,

flung afar.

And, out there,

somewhere,

awaits our Sirius,

burning bright.

Phoebe,

ever

our dog star.

 

Phoebe was a lurcher, saluki, greyhound cross. A Battersea Cats and Dogs rescue hound. A huge character, acknowledged as a beauty by pretty much everyone she met. She was really quite regal, did not offer her affection lightly, and had a wicked sense of humour and mischief. A dog, yes, but so very much more. She lifted and lightened our lives for some 15 years or so, and we miss her terribly.

 

This poem is the best I can do. 7/2/17. 

 

Post Script.

It has been said, “time heals all wounds.” I do not agree. The wounds remain. In time, the mind, protecting its sanity, covers them with scar tissue and the pain lessens. But it is never gone.

Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy.

 

Phoebe and Maisie, Pengelly Woods, Pembrokeshire.

Dogs in woods

 


Light parade – for National Poetry Day 2015

A buzzard floats,

a feather dusted flight,

mottled by the, ever sweet surprise,

the first fingered, soft whispered flush

of Pembrokeshire sunrise.

Dinas Head, capped in mid morning,

hurricane warning,

nettle nectared light,

honey busted,

green field and wind worsened hedgerows,

shimmering, clustered,

apparently lanced by purple tongued shadows.

Later, Berry Hill cows

cotton wool and soot splashed skins

soaked in castle bound, church wardened

gravestone greyed, flagstone mossed

autumn crazed sunshine.

Towards sunset,

a late blackberry,bruised and fat

falls, a tiny world of globes,

fruitful, untroubled as

motes of dust sparkle

amidst the faltering strobes,

the cautioning, duskling cackle

of Canadian Geese,

gradually muted, as the sky fades,

souped and stilled,

horizon blended.

Tonight?

Starlight sponged on the ink blacked,

spangled sky,

split by Strumble headed

lighthouse telescoped beams.

As we sleep, kaleidoscoped and vivid,

in the land of Westerly illuminated dreams.

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A link to a blog piece on our National Poetry Day (2014) event

lovely photos and a nice piece from Diana – we had a brilliant evening, a richness and diversity of poets , wonderful music from Lowri Evans and Lee Mason, delicious crepes provided by Beatrice of Ffwrn (and served – with great aplomb – by Helen Carey)  ….think we will return!!

http://dianapowellwriter.blogspot.co.uk/2014/10/pancakes-poems-at-ffwrn-fishguard.html?spref=fb

thanks Diana


The Christmas Gift : with thanks and holiday greetings to everyone who has done me the honour of following this blog.

Overlooking the estuary

Overlooking the estuary

The season of storms is upon us,
but a recent, magical day,
gave us the gift of
the estuary, stilled and low sunlight warmed,
the plumped, moss banked waters, becalmed.

I look up at our house
the farm nestling on the hill, where
your window is soft lit
and the fire burns within,
and I am so very fortunate to be
glad homed and hearthed,
protected, still.

Yet in Syria the snow is falling,
refugees flee, no journey’s end,
troubled children cry in the Philipinnes
desolation and ruin beckon in South Sudan,
here, our homeless shiver as sleet descends
no comfort at fireside,
no family, few friends.

On the estuary, the oyster catchers carol and trill,
as the sanderlings stuttered seaside run
the breeze unfettered, unzipped, undone,
whilst the cry of the gulls, mourns and chides
and the white lipped tide tumbles, salt water sprayed and spun,
open mouthed for the gathering chill.

And in the early hours,
by now, rain and wind maddened,
on my radio as I lie
enveloped in the duveted darkness
as the World is Served by the BBC
I learn that, in Yemen
young girls find themselves sold as child brides
no gifts to share,
precious little charity?

But I am loved, cosseted and cared for
neither cavalier nor complacent, this much I know
but grateful, sometimes almost guilty
that life, the world should spare me so.

And so, a few days before Christmas,
I turned for home,
such a very precious phrase.
And, if I had a wish for these
and future days,
and could share it with the mountain’s Saint,
Brynnach, lingering – perhaps – above.
I would ask this Christmas Gift,
for the world, love,
there must be love.


My Carningli Queen

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Carningli
Crowns the bay
As I stare hard
On this perfect summer’s day
At the blue-green world
Yawning beneath me.
Gasping to the top
I clasp at stone
And lay a new gift –
A blessing, ordered to complement
My bent –pin wishing well thoughts –
Atop the gathering cairn.
Rested, renewed,
My legs construed
To return me to you
And your melon scented kisses.
You – the jewel
In my Carningli crown.