Friday, 28 November 2014

Tools of the Trade

Words flow out through my finger tips
In little eddies or big slicks
My mental crane casts round and picks
A new selection
It's a bit like going on the spree
The choice of goods bewilders me
Ideas arrive and wander free
In loose connection.

Such a mental process is arcane
It happens; one cannot explain
How just a few lines can contain
Such depth of thought
The poet's role appears to be
A perception of reality
Expressed in terms that all agree
Cannot be taught...

(c) Poet in the woods 2014

Thursday, 27 November 2014

Love is what, exactly?

We humans are a funny lot
Ruled in turn by head and heart
Our minds are devious and plot
While emotions tear our lives apart.

Cold logic sometimes wins the day
Order and method have their place
But when our hearts are touched, we sway
Feelings cause the blood to race.

Irrational but endearing too
Who has not felt this vital force?
Old as the hills - but each time new!
We're set on a relentless course.

Our feelings we cannot contain
They rise within us and take hold
All rational thought from us they drain
Our humdrum lives turn into gold.

(c) Poet in the woods 2014

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

The Darker Side

In the mist and chill and early dark
Brussels shimmers; shop fronts mark
The tinsel season – fragile, bright
This year: cascading walls of light.

The packaging of hopeful dreams
In red, black, gold and silver themes
This outward show is bravely done
For those with means, such gifts are fun.

It's a time for families to meet
For friends at work to drink and eat
For celebrations of all kinds
At parties – dressed up to the nines!

But December is a bumpy ride
For those with no one by their side
Bereaved or lonely or in pain
The festive season is a strain ...

(c) Poet in the woods 2014

Tuesday, 25 November 2014

A Word on Language

English idioms are fun:
Ever seen anyone «jump the gun»?
How do butterflies reach your tum?
It's quite absurd;
And can a person be «bad news»?
What's an offer «you can't refuse?»
What happens when you «pay your dues»?
What's in a word?

There's «feeling blue» and «seeing red»
«Green» fingers in the flowerbed
A «brown study»'s something else instead
It makes no sense;
Figures of speech – a wealthy store
The English love a metaphor,
A practice foreigners deplore
Things get intense!

So much is just implied - not said
«Up the garden path» we're led
«End of the day», does not mean bed;
Brits stand apart;
Universal language? I'm not sure
Vocab rich, weird grammar lore
Yet children have this knack at four
All learnt by heart!

(c) Poet in the woods 2014

Monday, 24 November 2014

Where's the 95 Bus?

The heavens opened, the torrents flowed
The commuters grumbled, traffic slowed
No bus in Boitsfort's farthest reaches
I'd scream but there's no time for speeches.

Of course If I had listened well
I might have registered this hell
But the radio offers background noise
And the news just buzzes and annoys.

However, now I do recall
The dreaded "grève" word in the hall
As I got my keys and tram card out
My mind elsewhere, I have no doubt.

Last night a driver was attacked
And sick of taking all the flak
From a passenger whose fuse was short
Because he too was tired and fraught,

Decided he would take a stand;
So a wild cat strike was planned
The bus depot at Delta closed
And today the chaos clearly shows.

I wouldn't mind, but all this rain
Makes walking to the tram a pain
The missing buses should be here
Their absence makes the point quite clear.

Of course I made my destination
Wet right through, without elation
It made me realise we depend
On keeping drivers as our friend!

(written in 2006)

Poet in the woods 2014

Saturday, 22 November 2014

A Scene of Desolation

My terrace looks a sorry sight
All wilting leaves and broken stalks
Straggling flowers cling on tight
Heads bobbing in the wind like corks.

A last tomato on the vine ...
The herbs have somehow stood their ground
I still have rosemary and thyme
But the chives have wilted, they're no good!

What can I salvage from my bower?
Shock! Horror in each window-box
Miracles are beyond my power
I'll just sweep up and scrub the pots.

Yet I'm encouraged by the thought
That plants don't die, they hibernate;
Deep out of sight new life is wrought
They'll burgeon in the Spring – just wait!

(c) Poet in the woods 2014

Friday, 21 November 2014

Unfinished Business

Things abandoned in the street
Can be weird and wonderful and sweet,
As well as mundane, odd or foul
That must be scraped up – with a trowel!

For example, just the other day
A red flash drew my eye away
To some tiny toddler's leather boot
Brand new, it seemed to me, and cute.

Nearby no doubt an angry Mum;
Such footwear costs a princely sum
It lies defiant in the light
Will it still be there tonight?

Another time, surprised to see
In a busy street, bold as could be
Frothy knickers, cream elastic
Draped round a lamppost – quite fantastic!

How did they get there? Who'd lay claim
To such an item? Oh, the shame!
It's been said often – no big deal
But Brussels really is surreal!

(c) Poet in the woods 2014