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Category Archives: poetry

Veggie Supper, Antonio Machado and A Camellia

We had a Butternut Squash, a couple of Peppers and some Mozzarella in the fridge and BBC Good Food came up with  Roasted Squash with Mozzarella and Pesto – delicious!

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I found this poem this afternoon and it touched something in me.  The questions in the first stanza appealed and the answer speaks for me.

Is My Soul Asleep?

Is my soul asleep?
Have those beehives that work
in the night stopped? And the water-
wheel of thought, is it
going around now, cups
empty, carrying only shadows?

No, my soul is not asleep.
It is awake, wide awake.
It neither sleeps nor dreams, but watches,
its eyes wide open
far-off things, and listens
at the shores of the great silence.

Antonio Machado

I only discovered this poet today. It is the anniversary of his death in 1939. He was a refugee and was among thousands of others including his mother, his brother and his brother’s family fleeing Spain on foot across the Pyrenees in the last days of January 1939. He died a month later in the French village of Collioure.

Camellias are in flower all over the neighbourhood and are very cheery on these dull days of mizzle.

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Posted by on February 22, 2017 in Beauty, Food, nature, Photography, poetry, postaday2017

 

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Bunk Bedding, A Sculpture and A Poem

I love getting the beds ready for LiveWire visits! As I write they are on the train and will be here soon and the bunk beds are ready with their favourite bedding.

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Our neighbours are sculptors and quite often build something in the garden before it goes off to its new home. Here are the legs of the next big thing! Check out their website http://www.peteandsuehill.co.uk/ to find out who these enormous legs are going to belong to!

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Today’s  poem is by Fleur Adcock and is in Poem for the Day Two for February 10th. I love the lines “your gentleness  is moulded still by words/from me”  What a responsibility we have to the world to teach our children to be kind and gentle.

For a Five-Year-Old

by Fleur Adcock

A snail is climbing up the window-sill
into your room, after a night of rain.
You call me in to see and I explain
that it would be unkind to leave it there:
it might crawl to the floor; we must take care
that no one squashes it. You understand,
and carry it outside, with careful hand,
to eat a daffodil.

I see, then, that a kind of faith prevails:
your gentleness is moulded still by words
from me, who have trapped mice and shot wild birds,
from me, who drowned your kittens, who betrayed
your closest relatives and who purveyed
the harshest kind of truth to many another,
But that is how things are: I am your mother,
And we are kind to snails.

 

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Paper Lanterns, Snowdrops and Tennyson

After the annual Lantern Parade in Truro before Christmas, two of the lanterns have been put up in the Lemon Street Market, Pegasus in the background and a Lion in the foreground. The theme for the lanterns last year was stories. Perhaps this is Aslan from C S Lewis’ The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe.

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There are snowdrops popping up all over the place.

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Tennyson welcomed them with this delightful poem.

The Snowdrop – Alfred Lord Tennyson

Many, many welcomes,
February fair-maid!
Ever as of old time,
Solitary firstling,
Coming in the cold time,
Prophet of the gay time,
Prophet of the May time,
Prophet of the roses,
Many, many welcomes,
February fair-maid!

 
 

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New Yarn, Research and Brian Patten

I have some beautiful new yarn for my ongoing project which I can’t tell you much more about until March and LiveWire T’s birthday!

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I have spent the last three days reading and researching for our project and at the end of it have decided that this one, about a family connected with El Cobre Mine in Cuba, is not a story to tell in the graveyard but one for the booklet. To enlighten you re The Project, called “Until the Day Break”: in May we are to bring to life some of the ‘residents’ of our local Churchyard, St Euny and we will tell their stories beside their gravestones. The stories are to be a celebration of the lives lived and have led to some remarkable discoveries. Today, I have come to the conclusion that fascinating as it is, the story of El Cobre Mine in Cuba is not an uplifting one so not one for the performance. It is however, well worth the telling. Watch this space! When the booklet is published I will share it with you all.

It was these two gravestones that set me off on the story –

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The Mersey poet, Brian Patten, whose work I love and whom I met many years ago, was born on this day in 1946. To mark his birthday, I give you  “The Bee’s Last Journey to the Rose” which , though written many years ago, says much to me about hope for the future. I hope it does the same for you.

The Bee’s Last Journey to the Rose

I came first through the warm grass
Humming with Spring,
And now swim through the evening’s
Soft sunlight gone cold.
I am old in this green ocean
Going a final time to the rose.

North wind, until I reach it
Keep your icy breath away
That changes pollen into dust.
Let me be drunk on this scent a final time,
Then blow if you must.

by Brian Patten

 
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Posted by on February 7, 2017 in Beauty, knitting, poetry, postaday2017

 

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Primroses, Naomi Shihab Nye and Jabberwocky

I will resolve the photos issue over the weekend. In the meantime, here are two poems for your delectation and an old photo of Primroses in our garden as we have lots in flower today despite the cold.

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I love this one for its understanding of loneliness. I love the writing of Naomi Shihab Nye. If you put her name into my search you will see that I have chosen poems by her before. Kindness, is my favourite.

The Rider – Naomi  Shihab Nye

A boy told me
if he roller-skated fast enough
his loneliness couldn’t catch up to him,

the best reason I ever heard
for trying to be a champion.

What I wonder tonight
pedaling hard down King William Street
is if it translates to bicycles.

A victory! To leave your loneliness
panting behind you on some street corner
while you float free into a cloud of sudden azaleas,
pink petals that have never felt loneliness,
no matter how slowly they fell.

Jabberwocky, by Lewis Carroll,  is simply a logophile’s dream – all those lovely made up words that fit into the context so that the reader somehow knows what they all mean.

Jabberwocky
Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
      Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:
All mimsy were the borogoves,
      And the mome raths outgrabe.
“Beware the Jabberwock, my son!
      The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!
Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun
      The frumious Bandersnatch!”
He took his vorpal sword in hand;
      Long time the manxome foe he sought—
So rested he by the Tumtum tree
      And stood awhile in thought.
And, as in uffish thought he stood,
      The Jabberwock, with eyes of flame,
Came whiffling through the tulgey wood,
      And burbled as it came!
One, two! One, two! And through and through
      The vorpal blade went snicker-snack!
He left it dead, and with its head
      He went galumphing back.
“And hast thou slain the Jabberwock?
      Come to my arms, my beamish boy!
O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!”
      He chortled in his joy.
’Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
      Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:
All mimsy were the borogoves,
      And the mome raths outgrabe.
 
 

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A Winter Poem and A Pink Hat

A good friend sent me this poem and I am delighted to share it with you. Thank you, L. There is something very special about winter evenings when we can literally snuggle against the cold and seek shelter in the wrap of winter as our souls seeks solace.  It makes me think too of how lucky those of us with this privilege are.

Winter’s Cloak by Joyce Rupp

This year I do not want
the dark to leave me.
I need its wrap
of silent stillness,
its cloak
of long lasting embrace.
Too much light
has pulled me away
from the chamber
of gestation.

Let the dawns
come late,
let the sunsets
arrive early,
let the evenings
extend themselves
while I lean into
the abyss of my being.

Let me lie in the cave
of my soul,
for too much light
blinds me,
steals the source
of revelation.

Let me seek solace
in the empty places
of winter’s passage,
those vast dark nights
that never fail to shelter me.

I have spent the evening knitting – this time for myself. I have made a hat in pink! Tomorrow we are joining in solidarity and in support of the *non-partisan* women’s march occurring in Washington D.C. and other cities, in a march being organised in Cornwall on St Austell’s beach at East Portholland Saturday January 21st. We will gather on the beach from 4pm – 5pm in solidarity.

The following words from the official Women’s March on Washington’s “Guiding Vision and Definition of Principles” explain further.

The Women’s March on Washington is a women-led movement bringing together people of all genders, ages, races, cultures, political affiliations and backgrounds in our nation’s capital on January 21, 2017, to affirm our shared humanity and pronounce our bold message of resistance and self-determination.

“It is not our differences that divide us. It is our inability to recognize, accept and celebrate those differences.” – Audre Lorde

“We may have all come on different ships, but we’re in the same boat now.” – Martin Luther King Jr.

I’ll let you know how it goes. Before that gathering on the beach in St Austell we will be at the Rally in Truro to show support for our NHS.

Here is my hat!     #pussyhat project and its pink visual statement of resistance and solidarity,dscn9349 dscn9347

 
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Posted by on January 20, 2017 in America, Beauty, knitting, poetry, postaday2017

 

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Making, Roses and A Poem

Oldest LiveWire and I have spent much of the day making one of her Christmas presents, a wooden jewellery box that needed construction and painting. It is a present from her Aunt, Uncle and Cousin in Norfolk.  N is remarkably careful and attentive to detail and all the construction is done. Tomorrow she will paint and decorate it when all the glue is thoroughly dry.

It is lovely to see yellow roses blooming.

 

New Year Resolve  by May Sarton

The time has come

To stop allowing the clutter

To clutter my mind

Like dirty snow,

Shove it off and find

Clear time, clear water.
Time for a change,

Let silence in like a cat

Who has sat at my door

Neither wild nor strange

Hoping for food from my store

And shivering on the mat.
Let silence in.

She will rarely mew,

She will sleep on my bed

And all I have ever been

Either false or true

Will live again in my head.
For it is now or not

As old age silts the stream,

To shove away the clutter,

To untie every knot,

To take the time to dream,

To come back to still water.

I really  do need to clear the clutter!

 

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