There was nothing. Wide emptiness: The sea, the wind, the waves, whipped and white, and us, small in this vastness.
Oyster catchers are calling. Wait. They’re there, among the rounded stones, neatly searching. And, suddenly, an unexpected flock of plovers – lifting – cutting through the horizontal lines of sea and sky and strand – flouncing and flickering –
and a herring gull dances on the very edge of the wind; and a curlew pauses for a second and moves on. A cormorant spreads black umbrella wings to dry –
this barren place is bountiful.
Sherry at earthweal asks us to write about the places that nourish our wild hearts. She’s very kindly used two of my poems in her prompt – I’m honoured and delighted – and it would seem churlish not to write a response! When I need wild, I go to the sea. I’m lucky to live close enough to get there easily. It’s always the same and always different.
I’m also posting this for Lisa’s OLN over at dVerse.
The bush with white flowers is sometimes heavy with the sound of bees
and the thrush and the robin and the blackbird spill their song like champagne over-flowing
and even the rooks make a comfortable sound
and children in the playground
and the midnight bark of the fox
and the fly insistent against the window, seeking light light light
and the lap of the ocean on a shingle shore
and the green of a leaf and a flower unfurling –
everything alive is singing and I am singing – the blood in my veins sings, and my heart sings, and my fingers sing and the electric surges of my nerves are songs and the breath in my lungs is a song is a song is a song
I sit and drowse by candlelight. I dream that this, my little house becomes a boat on seas of night, and it’s my job to turn the prow towards the welcome harbour lights – by candlelight I sit and drowse.
Stay close to me, I’ll keep you warm; my arms about you are the key to safety from the coming storm – your arms about me, equally will hold me safe, away from harm: I’ll keep you warm, stay close to me.
By candlelight we’ll sit and dream, the stars are clear, the moon is bright, the world is shimmering and gleams, and all the dangers of the night are simply stories we have seen – we sit and dream by candlelight.
A sparrowlet for Grace at dVerse. Grace introduces us to this form, that takes this shape:
It’s quite…technical. Anyhow, head over to dVerse to see more.
“It is a moon, wrapped in brown paper”, he tells her. Mama casts him a dirty look, preparing for disappointment. Yet, when Ellie pulls off that brown paper, there it is, silvery-grey, glowing, wanting to float.
Outside, the sky is dark. There are stars, but no moon.
“How did you find it?” Ellie asks.
He shrugs. “It was caught up in the ash tree. I climbed up there, prodded it with a stick, managed to catch it”.
She thinks of him, risking the thin branches at the top to bring her treasure.
Later, they climb the hill behind the house and let the moon go. Hand in hand they watch it rise, bobbing into its familiar place. She knows she will always have a bond with the moon now. Its smile will be for her.
A flash fiction for Bjorn at dVerse. We take our line from Carol Ann Duffy’s poem Valentine: “it is a moon, wrapped in brown paper”
Firstly, it’s not that wild, unless wild means still and quiet – perhaps it does. Perhaps it means becoming water held with care. Something like water. Or silence, and sleep, turning away from everything, shutting out the world.
Perhaps it means dark shapes that form and fall away – almost visible, or soft sounds almost heard.
Lying, suspended, somewhere between light and dark, between air and water between sound and silence –
thoughtless, because thoughts are far too formed for this contorted space.
Brendan at earthweal asks us to think about the wild dark, the place where inspiration lies.
Think of me, then, fondly, as you think how the wind blows through the trees, and how pink flowers dance on the camellia, pink flowers clinging on there, ’til those flowers
scatter across the lawn, as life is scattered. Dream loving dreams of me, not empty dreams, shattered by daybreak. I will not be shattered free as a flower loosened by the wind is free
or a bird soaring on the wind’s turn, or light falling on the water. I am light, laughter and love: think of me with laughter, bright laughter. Think of me with thoughts that brighten
dark, the way the moon shines through the stormy dark. Sparks fly upwards, upwards. Let me be a spark.
A shadow sonnet for Laura at dVerse. I found this one extremely challenging. I find it hard to keep track of sonnets anyway, and the use of the same word at the beginning and end of the line nearly broke me. Anyhow, it’s done. Head over to dVerse to find more of these.
Winter nibbles away at the days until they’re pared down slivers of light between great slabs of dark. Winter gnaws at leaves, at flesh, bites down to the bone. Winter swallows warmth, sucks the heat from under skin, grinds life down to shivering dust.
A quadrille for Mish at dVerse – 44 words, including the key word “nibble”. Come and quadrille with us.
The first snowdrops are here. They cling to the edges of the field, the way snow clings to a window frame. Like snow, they linger in the shade. They are the whitest thing I know – whiter than frost, whiter than the moon, whiter than snow itself. They are winter, and the end of winter; cold, and the promise of spring.