Monday, 30 November 2015

COP21 Climate Change Conference

Huge conference on global warming
Heads of State on Paris swarming
More safety measures put in place
Time is on the wing – we chase

Chimeras – can the world agree
And speak as one? It seems to me
The stakes are high, the damage done
Floods and droughts are Number One.

Our planet suffers – who's to blame?
Man's the destroyer – that is plain
Will Paris pull trumps from its sleeve?
The world awaits – we dare not breathe!

(c) Poet in the woods 2015

In Paris 7-8 December 2015
In Marrakech 7-11 November 2016

Wednesday, 25 November 2015

Brussels - Back on Track?

The Metro girds its loins and and runs!
In many places guards with guns
Protect and check those who commute
Will distant stations follow suit?

All the trams are back on track
And STIB's* big buses take up slack
The word “mobility” is moot
Not all can take their normal route!

The sleet and icy winds deter
Leisure travellers who don't stir
From heated homes to shopping streets
Despite the lure of Christmas treats.

Hoteliers look on in dismay
As would-be tourists stay away
This situation is quite new;
The Burgomaster and his crew

Step up precautions – they are fraught
How long before those men are caught?
Meanwhile for kids it's back to school
In Brussels Fear will never rule!

(c) Poet in the woods 2015

* STIB = Brussels public transport network

Tuesday, 24 November 2015

Brussels Lock-Down - Day 4

We live in such amazing times
Too serious for my flippant rhymes
So I ask myself, as you must too
Against such people – what's to do?

Security in all our schools
And metro stations - means new rules
Where's the workforce and the guns?
Have we an endless tap on funds?

It's culture that defines our lives
With all these closures – what survives?
Who are we when all's said and done
When plays and concerts are struck dumb?

Our joie de vivre takes a hard knock
We ponder history - take stock;
As Peace of Mind looks on – and mourns
Fanaticism takes new forms ...

(c) Poet in the woods 2015

Following the terrorist attacks in Paris on 22nd November, 2015.

Monday, 23 November 2015

A Pregnant Pause?

Provincial Brussels, quiet and quaint
With St. Michael as its patron saint
Presents a different face today
Praline-seekers kept at bay.

Lofty Christmas tree in place
But of festive cheer no trace
With security at Level Four
No metro, school or shopping store.

The police swoop down in Molenbeek
Arrests, crossfire and buildings wrecked
Lombard street is barricaded
Hide-outs in Charleroi are raided.

The Federal Police are keeping mum
But social media have fun
With rumours flying and no facts
Facebook posts show cheeky cats!

A quiet weekend spent indoors
With concerts cancelled, time to pause
Like the New York black-out long ago*
In nine months' time results will show!

(c) Poet in the woods 2015

* on 9th November, 1965 ...

Sunday, 22 November 2015

Whither Forecast?

There's talk of sleet and flakes of snow
A purity that brings a glow
To this soiled world of evil ways
Eye-to-eye contact fear displays.

With darkening skies clouds quickly loom
A sense of foreboding spreads at noon
Deserted streets – no normal state
Winter's tyranny can't wait.

But against such weather - what's to do?
The flakes will fall on me and you
We wrap up warmly every day
And taking care, we face the fray!

(c) Poet in the woods 2015

Friday, 20 November 2015

The Brussels Sewer Museum

There's talk of sleet and slushy streets
As gentle Autumn now retreats
Sure sign of winter - heavy rains
Swathes of mulched leaves, flooded drains...

This week a new event occurred
It kicked up quite a stink, I heard!
By the Porte of Anderlecht
Is a quaint museum; quite a trek

Down passages below the street
Entrance by a toll booth neat
Amazingly you can explore
The River Senne and hear its roar.

Once Brussels had a “Venice” face
Now boulevards disguise its trace
A river, shallow, wound its way
Behind the Grand'Place every day.

Detritus of all kinds flowed past
To scour it - an unpleasant task
So over a hundred years ago
The city council made it go

Down a sewer network deep and vast
Cholera – Evil of the past!
It's fun, it's different, worth the trip
Lifeline of Brussels – but don't slip!

(c) Poet in the woods 2015

Le Musée des Égouts - Porte d'Anderlecht

Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Addicted to Facebook?

Facebook can't help but amaze
Strange happenings on every page
Politics play the lion's role
With cartoons which are harsh or droll.

What of the posts that make you think?
Intriguing stories - via a link
How many of you have been “tagged”?
And don't reminders drive you mad?

Are “Facebook” friends the real McCoy?
Personal comments can annoy
They mushroom in an on-line screed
Is gritty gossip what we need?

It's hard these days to marshal thought
As our attention span is short
Adverts break our concentration
With promises of (fake) sensation!

While we upload photos for our friends
And promote and share the latest trends
Real life, my friends, goes on elsewhere;
Does the Facebook forum care?

(c) Poet in the woods 2015

Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Thomas - We'll Meet Again!

At 23 months Thomas strides
Into the big wide world and rides
Albeit closely held by Pa
Propped up against the handlebar

Upon a streamlined racing bike
Impressive for a tiny mite!
He cannot reach the pedals yet
But otherwise his gaze is set

Firmly on the road ahead
Perched up high on tyred tread
Inside his head the wheels are turning
As Thomas masters cycle learning!

(c) Poet in the woods 2015

Saturday, 14 November 2015

Dans quel monde on vit?

Dites - dans quel monde on vit?
Le drame, la malbouffe et l'Ennui
Le terrorisme est partout
La peur nous poursuit dans la rue ...

Les finances - plus en équilibre
Une demi-vie – tout en hybride
Le temps nous manque; en surmenage
Au bout du compte - paix en naufrage.

Incertain – l'Avenir en doute
Notre planning en déroute
Bannies – les vieilles certitudes
Le chemin tout droit sera rude!

(c) Poet in the woods 2015

Friday, 13 November 2015

Friday the 13th!

Let's consider, if you will
How a certain date and weekday will
If put together - create fear
This can happen several times a year...

This combination, who knows why
Is a portent of the evil eye
Strong characters on this day were born
With personalities “hors normes”:

Fidel Castro - fiery and intense
Alfred Hitchcock - Master of suspense
Samuel Beckett - playwright en français
Why, Rossini died upon this day!

At the Last Supper thirteen guests;
Bible tradition still attests
It was on Friday that Christ died
Reason for bad luck world wide?

Airports have no Gate Thirteen
A 13th floor is rarely seen
In tower block - it can't be sold
Say 13 and your blood runs cold...

So when thirteen on a Friday falls
Many look in crystal balls
They're afraid to venture out, it's true
But I don't fall for this – do you?

(c) Poet in the Woods 2015

Thursday, 12 November 2015

Under Attack!

Proud ivory castles fit and strong
Loyal companions our life long:
Yet sometimes, they give up the battle
Nerves get raw and white walls rattle.

Sugar armies find a breach
In a tiny corner out of reach
An alarm is sounded far away
The hunt is on to fight Decay!

Best form of defence – attack
Vigilance – no holding back
The torture chamber deep inside
Reminds us – there's no room to hide!

With guards asleep and drawbridge down
Wandering sappers out of town
Undermine our bastions with skill
So it's Red Alert - we know the drill!

(c) Poet in the woods 2015

Monday, 9 November 2015

Our Daily Horoscope

It's Monday and a brand new slate
I scan the papers – what's my fate?
Should we believe the printed word
Or on-line horoscope? – Absurd!

The whole world grouped into 12 signs
Our lives mapped out in crisp short lines:
Where we'll travel, our career
Love encounters – it's all here!

Though astrology is intuition
Cynics regard it with suspicion;
Yet Man is still enthralled by space
Where each planet has its place...

Each day these astral charts are done
Intrigued, we read them just for fun
'Cos a phrase might actually be true
Coincidences happen too!

(c) Poet in the woods 2015

Friday, 6 November 2015

Bomb on Board?

These planes that drop out of the sky
Are a puzzle; why, oh why
When thorough checks have been performed
Are nasty rumours quickly spawned?

Pilot error soon discounted
Investigation quickly mounted
The hunt for the Black Box reveals
A nervous tension the Press feels.

This time at the Red Sea Resort
Stranded tourists are distraught
Over Egypt flight near Sharm al-Sheikh
Shattered with all hands on deck...

This silver bird - new Trojan horse
Bore a package from a doubtful source
Holidaymakers are betrayed;
The fierce explosion is man-made.

I name no names but my thoughts go
To frequent travellers – they must know
Safety checks will get much longer
And apprehension that much stronger!

(c) Poet in the woods 2015

Russian aircraft crashed on 31st October, 2015

Thursday, 5 November 2015

The 1605 Gunpowder Plot

Some facts and figures you may know;
In Parliament cellars deep below
The Seat of Power where Scotsman James
Would inaugurate the Stuart claims

To the throne of England post Queen Bess,
Some Catholic Plotters risked arrest,
By hiding under bales of hay
Explosives which in barrels lay:

Thirty-six vats warm and dry
To blow Parliament and King sky high
And place a Catholic on the throne ...
Saturday, November 5th is known

By school kids in their primary days
As the Guy Fawkes plot which did not blaze;
English justice never faltered
The traitors: most hanged, drawn and quartered...

1605 was long ago
But such events long shadows throw
Bonfires crackle, bright sparks fly
What's that? “ A Penny for the Guy?”

(c) Poet in the woods 2015

Tuesday, 3 November 2015

Thomas - at Arkaroola!

Wee pioneer upon our hands!
Thomas not yet two – has plans:
Australia's outback, sun-bleached blocks
And rugged terrain fairly rocks!

A first excursion far from home
Down dusty, off-piste roads scarce known
Thomas, who has itchy feet
Observes this moonscape-like retreat.

Here Nature, bare-faced, greets the eye
Unforgiving landscape – endless sky
An eternal, awe-inspiring scene
Russet-ochre, flecked with green ...

Arkaroola with its rock-strewn scree
And ridge-top tour is a must-see
Rucksack and sunhat to the fore
Thomas rushes to explore!

On the verge of speech and yet
No voiced impression can we get
Of what he feels about this place
Though happiness shines on his face.

(c) Poet in the woods 2015

Sunday, 1 November 2015

A Quiet Moment

Chrysanthemums in fits and starts
Their vibrant colours warm our hearts
The florists do a roaring trade
In graveyards everywhere displayed …

I see sad families make their way
United in their grief today
To remember those who've gone before
Sharing silence, feelings raw.

More poignant – those who come alone
To catch a glimpse of souls they've known
Re-kindling love within their heart
They capture briefly their lost spark.

Down the aisles I hesitate
To observe a name or read a date
Impressive stone, or new-turned earth
Many foreigners at birth.

I reach the lawn with ashes strewn
Eleven years gone by too soon ...
I let my heart a moment grieve
Then turn around and quietly leave.

(c) Poet in the woods 2015