Readers make the best companions

Drifting above the room
to areas rarely seen,
the top ledge of the bookshelf
displays a dusty parade
of propped novels read
and some unread
leaning aslant into tomorrow.

The lampshades from here
are tempting orbs
shining upwards,
directing me
in their searchlight nudges,
with adamant requests
to get out a duster and flick
away highlighted cobwebs.

I desist (knowing what I know)

For there’s that old spider reading
“The Time Traveler’s Wife” again,
and I notice its fine silken thread
traversing one room corner
right to the open book.

If only I made the same efforts
to read as it did. So, I assist
turning the page for it (carefully)
and between us we get to page two.

In genuine thanks
it untangles its trap,
and offers me begrudgingly
another free-fly
so I can become accustomed
to these fragile, moth wings.

Here’s hoping it’s a lengthy book
with a happy ending.

A straight line has no corners.

Days lead into days
of straight ahead lines,
I am just an ordinary,
old schooled legionary
out of time with his world.
In a century imagined
I’d never see,
scarred from too many battles
with Barbarians.

Our monuments,
they’ve alas crumbled,
given themselves unwillingly
to the sea, not wanting to be
rediscovered, “Carpe Diem”
thrown upon its head;
a plaque under the waves.

I’ve Viewed the statues
of the Gods and Goddesses
from sideline standpoints,
caught fish swimming through
their armless elbows,
necklaces of pearl, azure,
just precious weights
to submerge in transition.

There’s emptiness within
those marble set features,
the missing limbs, chiselled lips,
from subtle to strong Roman noses,
once so carefully formed,
now broken, askew;
as if that’s what they always

On the new shoreline,
you stood beside me, my love,
posed in their place, smiled.
Shook the old world from your hair
like Neptune’s daughters
discarding tridents for a nets,
and it was no use denying,
we soldiers were captured
by a different pace, along a path
which really didn’t matter
how direct it was.

You can’t fight every war,
sometimes you just have to live.

From small beginnings

The stream finds
its cascading rhythm,

swirling past branches,
who hold out all the
memories of good timing
in those certain buds of spring.

A flowing staircase,
fresh, over the rocks,
come tumbling
syncopated chords,
and it has played this out,
oh, many times before,
but never in quite
the same way.

How it loves
the collected volumes
of these seasonal rains.

For they are a means
to run faster and further,
and to sail a leaf
to a new found land
(it only dreamt of
once upon a time,
when it was up in its tree)

Ever onward the waters zigzag,
often with the angle of a lute.

Retuning by degrees, it remerges
to be heard once again,
becoming the folk song
it was surely meant to be.

Keep travelling


Don’t dismiss
the unseen
or the seemingly

For the wild winds
of imagined thought
once steered
and caught,

can push ships
with sails unfurled,
right to the other side

of the world.

She asked me who broke the pond

Oh, don’t ask me I wasn’t there,
but ’twas a cracking affair.

I’m reliably informed
from lots of swallows sat in trees,
a small vole and a -oh please
you don’t want me to name them all,
they were there – that is all.

I’m told some hefty ducks
skated freely over the ice,
more than once, maybe twice
until their upturned tums
met their feathery bums.

Then a burly swan
joined in the fun
(he didn’t know his size)
much to the other swans surprise,
skidded right to the middle,
which made the field mice giggle.

It then turned substantially worse,
there was a loud craaack, a curse,
and an old crow landed right upon his head,
– that’s what the ducks said.

That’s when the ice broke.

That’s when the ice broke!

So, who did the deed,
was it the crow or was it the swan?
I can’t be sure,
as I wasn’t actually there.

But did that swan give that crow
a slap and a very big swany stare
which caught it completely unaware,
and was the crow flattened below,
and did the mice continue to laugh,
yes, they did, Cath!

Time makes a good pen

A lot of truths here.
They begin to tap
you upon the shoulder
with a persistence
of drumming fingers,
and while you can’t ignore
those hands
that play out so much,
you can begin to live,
with their off-beat rhythms.

They may even have
their own strain of music.

Still, I know one thing,
and that is,
when the doubts creep in,
from around the corner
and the confidence wanes
in the bottom of a coffee cup
(somehow it now
has a hairline crack in it
that you never noticed before)
that is when you should
take stock of what
you have achieved thus far
and take that moment
to quietly celebrate.

Yes, remember to do that.
No one is ever remembered
for putting nothing out there.

Keep on creating,
until the last clock has ticked
and time is no more.
Even then,
snap that minute hand off,
and dip it in ink.
Time makes a good pen.

A songbird

It’s in the falling,
this expansion that I crave.
One to be in two,
for the reassurance is complete
in its lasting to be embraced.

Fully, I give in here
with arms that form circles
around your soft back.
This is the tenure of a songbird
becoming nearer
to the windowsill
by your bed linen.

Rest your eyes
in the peace that curls
as we lay beside in close,
the morning caught
in desires fulfilled leaving night.

Words could be spoken now,
but they don’t describe
all that is taught in the embrace
we share under music.

I could seek out a spiral
for the twist of hair locks
across your untroubled face.
Pleasure sung the lasting
flicker to a love
that knows nothing else,
but the taste
of a candle snuffed
in the dawn’s length.

So be ashen
as pale as the sunlight
cultured between your legs,
colours will display
your cheeks till the hour
is over.

Love, the lean against my side
I’ll respond in smiles
that capture the lamplight
now made beamed redundant.

Light a cigarette, and watch
the smoke coil ever upwards
around the ceiling that saw
all of our hopes yesterday.
Come songbird
and join the smoothness
that lays here,
you are the fracture
that is healed before the dawn.

All of our former selves
reside in this space,
it is foretold
under the roofs that left
dishevelled beds of creases.

The red maple.

In between
two red shores
that might one day meet,
on a white, rafting river
there sails a leaf,
and it chooses neither
one side over the other;

for it itself
is the very centre
of everything held dear.

This reliable leaf,
weathering all,
is there for all to see
on the wilder rapids,
yet it keeps its course,
steering within, and along
to each of our dreams.

To be sought and found,
it will sail forever
afloat like a certainty.

This red maple,
here, on the Great Lakes,
or breathed at the top of hills,
fished from the loops
of meandering rivers,
or to be caught as it flies
in the woods and forests
walked within our hearts.


Canadian flag – I think the red flanks could be the two banks of a river,
with the leaf floating in between. So, when the flag ripples in the wind,
the river is alive. It then flows.