The Puzzle of Flowers


I walked along the road of life
My heart brought low with care
As I wondered at the gardens
And the flowers blooming there

When I came across a garden
All abandoned; full of weeds
A rose amidst it, trying to bloom
But quelled by unmet needs

Arrested by its beauty
I stopped and stood a while
Just wishing that the gardener
Would pay heed to his toil

Alas he turned his wilful back
And spurned his wilting rose
By then it flowered in my heart
And so it was I chose

To sneak into the garden
Working hard to try
To lift her drooping flowers
To turn again and face the sky

I weeded, pruned, untangled
And did my very best
To restore her glory
And yet, and yet; unrest

Whilst I tried to help her
And delighted that she grew
She wrapped her branches round me
Restored life to me, too.

As she thrived my mind dwelled
On a problem full of thorns;
A trespasser was I
Inside the world my rose adorns

Should I have never entered?
Should I have passed her by?
No – I never could have seen her,
Walked away, and let her die.

So I rejoice in every bloom
Which buds within those walls
Always with my ears tuned
For the gardener’s footfalls

But when I see her in the sun
Far less consigned to night
I still don’t know which way to judge
Or whether I was right

It’s really rather complex
In this puzzle of the flowers
But I’m too busy gardening
To fret for many hours


TwentySomething Days

Sunset Heart

Remember the way you felt when our eyes met
Remember the beat of your heart and don’t let
Future or distance or life ever fade the heat
Of that time long ago when someday we’re going to meet

Remember sometimes that tomorrow doesn’t really come
Remember moments last lifetimes even though only just begun
Don’t shy away from the love opportunity brings
In that time-space dimension built from all of the in-betweens

Remember the shadows and lights and the scent of skin
Remember raw and unbreakable bond of a heart-twin
Keep hold of those moments which anchor a place in time
When minutes meant nothing at all, but that you were all mine

Remember a life full of stories to write and are yet untold
Remember night skies shot through with rain and silver and gold
I held you and knew that my heart had finally found home
My arms still ache, empty, hanging on for the unknown

Remember one day in the future forever begins
Remember as trumpets sound truth we acknowledge that Love wins
All of the step-stones of history were leading to now
I’ll find ways in future to make you present again somehow

Dear Friend

Sunset Heart

Dear friend, you have my heart
I’ll let you know right now, forever’s
Never going to start to be enough
For no forever ever could
Encapsulate the height
Or depth
Or breadth
Of love
My fortune-favoured soul
Has found in you, and
Somehow, once upon a time
You plucked me
From the swirling masses
Who imbibed their minds sublime
With such delight upon your words
And I amongst them eager to
Consume the exquisite things I heard
Yet through the clamour you saw
Some tiny thing, some heart-hook
Which made it worth your while
To spend time on a second look:
That time you spent was never lost
Though gambled, I can promise you
Money back – I’ll guarantee the cost
Whatever you outlay I’ll find somehow
Some way to pay you back
For all the worth and wonder
You’ve given me
No expectation
No demands or asks
Just quiet determination
On my part that I would
Learn from you and try
To finally start to live
For heaven knows
I was failing – heart-sick
Scared to prove my word
And hiding behind veils
Yet you were unabashed
Courageous. Beautiful.
You taught me #LoveWins
And true love never fails
You chose to see it through
And now I owe a debt of love
To you, for I’m now free
To say that I love you
And all because
You first
Loved me.

The Crushing Dragon

The fun is in the maybe
I’ve developed a hopeless and dragon-y crush
Who takes flight at the sound of your voice
She crept in so quiet, so gentle and small
Now she has my heart caught in a vice

Her arrival was really unwonted
A flirt of her wings and therein
She roared very soft and blew smoke-rings
Shaped as hearts, which just made me grin

She sat quite benign on my shoulder
And warmed up my world with her sparks
But quite soon she began to take over;
Could have all, or the sum of my parts

She whispers encouragement to me
Whiffles tiny bright words in my ear
When I see you she flies into cartwheels
Reminds me you, too, hold me dear

But she’s green, that small dragon, and nervous
For she knows she has misjudged her part
She arrived and won’t leave but she knows she can’t stay
And so sinks her claws deep in my heart

She watches and waits to berate me
She tells me I’m doing it wrong
She says I’m a fool cos I kept her
Though she desperately wants to belong

I’ve tried so, so hard to extinct her
Even shut her away in a box
But somehow the magic of you, dear
Undoes every one of my locks

She’s happy as long as you are, love
When you’re sad then she lies down and howls
If someone upsets you, her hackles go up
And she bares all her teeth and she growls

She shows me all good things about you
And purrs with delight at your words
She tries to find self-centric meaning
(Which is likely invented, not heard)

She mostly just wants me to keep you
If I can, and embetter your world
But she thinks my success is unlikely
So her hopes are all kept tightly furled

She’s so very pleased with “I love you”s
Her pretty eyes get very wide
But I’m struggling to keep her in shadows
Cos I think that she still needs to hide

I don’t know what to do ’bout this dragon
I don’t think I can set her free yet
She’s untamed and I hope she won’t scare you
In the meantime I’ll take what I get

Bucolic Journey Home


Drops still soak my shirt, but now they’re warm
I’m safe behind the wheel and looking on
As rolling gentle farmland flanks my way
Soft cloud-lit hills ere misting into grey
The air is warm and laced with summer rain
And thunder rumbles overhead again

The fields are patchworked; crop with fallow earth
In some, abundance, there, in others, dearth
Yet e’en amidst the long beheaded stalks
And stems, the crows and pigeons take their walks
To peck and fill each hungry feathered beak;
To worms and bugs a fast-pecked death they wreak

Ahead the tarmac greys and folds and dips
All runnel-pooled, fresh-washed and water slicked
Above, the boughs of trees reach out – hold hands
Unload sparkling fat drops across the land
And wreathing through the air across the fields
The forerunning scent of autumn woodsmoke yields

Hedgerows green yet now bedecked with brown
Where summer flowers have faded, seeds have grown
And wait their turn for scattering autumn breeze
To shake them free and grant new life’s release
For now, tangled, content amongst the briars
Where dark-juice berries draw hungry mouthed admirers

Here and there the fields of fattened summer grain
Hang soaking heads, with hopes to rise again
And ripen off in searing perfect sun
Complete in harvest-time, the season done
I hope for them blue skies will return soon
And for myself; not ready to face the gloom

Further on, a festival is in process
Great stage, watch-towers; a mark of human progress
To pitch in fields and celebrate the arts
Embrace life, and music, welcoming the parts
Acknowledging, rain-washed, their beauteous goals
To touch us deep in our aesthetic souls

Yet canvas-pods and crowds cannot compare
To simple beauty – forests; birdsong; there
Is everything an aesthete e’er could need
And in those vistas I could only heed
The landscape, silent, drenched in August glory
Yet mere footnotes in nature’s season-story

Emotional Hangover

Sunset Heart

I’ve fallen over that dread edge again
My thoughts in tangles and my heart undone
I’m lost in tangents; light-bathed, wasted
Beauty bloodied by the setting sun

My world feels raw and shadowed now
My heart tied firm to yours in bright red string
Though barbed I draw it close around me
Grounded by the comfort love and hurt bring

“Acknowledge; embrace; step back; reframe”
I fight for air – my soul as yet unseasoned
A tattered being drowning in life’s floods again
Waterlogged and heeding voices still unreasoned

A false smile scratches claws across my cheeks
Head pounding – a relentless, dizzy drum
Unbidden prayers lips whisper into vapour
Heart keens to feel the warmth of drenching sun

Darkness drags the corners of existence
I’m too lacklustre to leave a life half-won
Please keep me tethered, wait, and I will glow again
To reignite; burn bright as I’d begun.