Storm – poem for dVerse

It began with a silence

a silence I hardly heard,
lost in all the silences,
lost in all the noises of the world

and then the first drops
whispered on my skin
so soft I hardly felt them

left me staring
at the dust dry earth
wondering what I knew

and then



I’m hosting at dVerse tonight! I’m asking people to think about harbingers, beginnings, the way things can start almost without us realising it. Do join in.


behind the door – twiglet poem

There is always something      …….                       (but what?)

behind the door

or scrabbling between the floor …… (polished wood…)

and the …. ceiling

and I never quite catch it

it moves quickly …. (that’s what scares me)

darting from dark to …. dark

half formed shadow …. ( eyes)

but I hear it. …. Oh, I hear it.

a twiglet for Misky

Steeple – poem for dVerse

here is the church here is the steeple open the door and here are the people
praying for their souls in the scent of chrysanthemums

oh, their souls, dressed in white
crying crying crying in the corner of the world.

crying for the world.

This is my second poem for Mish’s dVerse prompt. I found myself channelling Stevie Smith, I think. Steep is the word tonight.

Steeped – quadrille for dVerse

hair coiled like ammonites
she hangs


steeped in nostalgia –
memories darkening around her,
twining smoke,

blind to the fading photograph,
the dust gathering,
the echoes scattering
like sunlight on water

my paper nautilus adrift
on the turbulent ocean

endlessly spiralling
seeking depth

Mish is hosting quadrille night at dVerse, the poets’ pub. The word is “steep” but the prices aren’t. Boom boom.

Winter – poem for dVerse

From leaf-shed
to new growth –

we are seeing out
the winter.

Sun-starved, we hanker
after light,

hoarding up pale moments
of beauty –

the scratch of twigs against
the sky,

the bleached petals of
the sunset,

the red haze growth of
witch hazel

and we yearn.

Oh, we yearn.

Lillian is hosting at dVerse tonight, asking us to shed our inhibitions, and our coats, and settle down to some writing. We are riffing on the word “shed”. Join us.

Spring-cleaning Sonnet

How do you shed the lives you’ll never lead?
The shoes that dream of corridors of power,
the teetering piles of books you’ll never read,
the dress meant for a ballroom in a tower?
The hat that ought to shield you from the sun
on the bright terrace of some palazzo,
the trainers for a race you’ll never run,
the stockings for a lover you won’t know –
the lives piled in the corners of the room,
that gather dust, and whisper of regret –
the things you could have had, but didn’t choose,
or didn’t want, or never tried to get –
those lives are beautiful as snow,
but all snow melts. It’s time to let them go.

This is a re-write of a sonnet I put up a week or so ago. The original is here: It seems a bit greedy, putting up yet another sonnet, but Bjorn did say we could do revisions, and I thought it might be interesting to compare this one and the original.

I had some feedback on the original poem, (thank you, Lona, much appreciated), and realised that the volta didn’t really have enough impact. I have struggled with the volta in the past – it always feels like a bit of a punchline, and felt a bit tum-ti-tum. However, this whole sonnet exercise has clarified it for me, and I now realise it’s supposed to be a bit like that. So this is my re-write, with extra added voltation.

The art of confession – poem for dVerse

You think that I will show you all my scars?
You want me to perform some sick striptease –
open my heart to you, reveal my flaws?
What right have you to see what no-one sees?
You sense me brooding over my dark times,
tell me confessing all will set me free,
as if the past can be re-made by rhymes.
The stories I hold hidden cannot be
left lightly fluttering, like butterflies –
what secret guilts do you think you’ll uncover?
I clasp the memories of the times I failed,
I hold those memories tight as any lover –
you’d mould my pain into some fairy tale,
for in the end, confession is betrayal.

Anmol at dVerse is challenging us to write confessional poetry. A lot of my poetry is confessional – I think that’s the nature of poetry. In fact, I probably reveal more about myself than I realise whenever I write. This is, of course, a poem that claims not to be confessional, but there you go. Read it as a confession of my secretive nature… It’s also the last of my sonnets for this month’s sonnet challenge. This is the terza rima sonnet – you’ll notice the interlocking 3 line rhyme scheme. I needed to get one written, it was bugging me.

The painting – poem for dVerse

if I could walk
down that white road
under that white sun,
with my shadow
sharp carved beneath me,
smelling the heat of the road –
I would step through this frame
and let my skin sigh
in the pleasure of light,
not looking back.

Lillian at dVerse asks us to write about something hanging on our walls. When we were in Goa many years ago, we bought a painting. At this time of year it makes me dream.

January – haibun for dVerse

We walked up the lane under the flat January sky, and stopped at the gate of the top field to watch the fieldfare feeding. At first you just see a crowd of birds, some on the ground, some fluttering just above it. After a while, you realise there’s a pattern to this: the birds are all facing the same way. The ones at the back flutter over the flock to settle at the front and feed there, and that’s happening continually, so that they gradually roll across the field. A few moments after we arrived, they suddenly all lifted up, and formed a spiralling cloud that made its way over to a neighbouring tree.

January is the month of flocks of birds. We had a great murmuration of starlings rustle over us this afternoon, and the field by the pond is white with herring gulls. Even the rooks are keeping closer together than usual. Strength in numbers at this hollow time of year.

starlings’ wings whisper
wind rattles naked seed pods
tales of the north wind

Everything’s a little out of kilter this week, but I’m trying to catch up! This is for Monday’s dVerse haibun prompt – thank you, Kim, for making me look more closely at January, and finding some beauty there.