That frozen day.

That day we looked at the world
through the pleated windows
of the ice. Circles we pulled
out of buckets, and the old green water butt.

We saw light, and crazy shapes
bent and kaleidoscoped,
and our fingers froze a little,
and the water dripped, until
the ice slipped, suddenly, shattering.

An ice quadrille for Mish at dVerse.


I was not lost

Looking back, I was never there –
not in that room, that bed,
that body.
I was not lost.
I was too heavy – I was sunk
down in the dark, where the light
runs slow.
Blue shafts of sunlight
filtering down – my eyelids
barely touched –
my skin too heavy,
all my bones, too heavy.
I was not lost,
just deep, sleeping my dark sleep,
dreaming my dark dreams.

For Merril at dVerse, who gives us a list of podcast titles, and asks us to incorporate two of them into a poem. Here’s the list:

Articles of Interest: American Ivy

I Was Never There

Legacy of Speed

Not Lost


Reveal: After Ayotzinapa

Rumble Strip


This American Life

Ghost in the Burbs


There’s something brave about them,
flapping in the wind, but holding on –
reflections gleaming on wet tarmac –
the double dark of street and sky.

Gallant, I think. Old fashioned words
for something bold and charming –
even though I know the man
who hung them there, and he’s

not dashing. Not a man to bow
and ask you if your card is full.
Just one quadrille?

But something in him craves
these twinkling lights, so small,
so delicate. So brave. They keep faith
through all the darkest nights. They shine.

I’m hosting at dVerse tonight. The lights are on! Check us out.


Some days, she forgets herself –
sugars the countryside,
adds candy colour skies –
a drift of birds –

and then remembers who she is:
monochromes the world,
deadens the light.

Some nights, she throws clouds,
but sometimes she can’t bring herself
to hide the stars. She can’t resist
the sparkle of them.

A quadrille for Mish at dVerse. Our word is “candy”.

My winter

My love is winter –
oh, the paleness of his skin,
and his eyes like January.

My love is winter.
He has built a home for me,
of storms and hail,
the winter things.

My love is winter –
he has carved
roses from snow,
lilies from ice –
a garden made
of hints and glints
of light.

My love is winter.
He has set me dreaming,
his hands so cold they burn,

my heart a lantern
trapped under ice.

A bit of wintry romance and whimsy for Lill at dVerse. She’s given us some song titles to choose from and incorporate into our poems. Can you spot them?

My Love Is Winter (The Smashing Pumpkins Oceania)
Roses from Snow (Emmylou Harris)
Trapped Under Ice (Metallica)
Winter Things (Ariana Grande)

I could have called this ” A Winter’s Tale”, I guess.


All that sunlight
trapped here. A hundred years
of sleep in a green tower –
sunlight gathered, woven
into something solid,
light that murmured,
light that swayed,
light that knew the taste of soil
and the sound of birdsong
and the dark –

and we have woken it –
warmth spilling out,
golden and dancing
goddess again.

A quadrille for Ms Jade Li at dVerse. Our word is “warm” – perfect prompt for this time of year!

Hunters. Moon.

Orion strides across the sky,
chasing a golden moon. His children
are out hunting – owl holds still,
listening: the world a syncope of heartbeats;
fox slinks smoothly through a pewter world
overlaid with multi-coloured stinks
and weasel dreams of nut-plump fieldmice –
all the world is glimmering and rustling,
feasting before the winter starves us all.

We’re writing moon poems at dVerse tonight. I’m hosting. Come and have a look.

What is good?

I went out one day to look for Good,
found a red vixen, killing
to feed her cub, a magpie
mourning a dead fledgeling; the sky
heavy with rainclouds, spilling
life on the parched ground where I stood.

A sestain again – I’m trying to make this form and rhyme scheme an instinctive way of thinking. This is a second one for dVerse, where our theme is Good and Evil.