I can sketch passably, I’ve been a marionette maker and performer, I have worked as a therapist and can hypnotize people! It was only when regression became the in thing and too many private clients wanted to see if they were ever connected to Cleopatra that I gave it up!
Most of the time however for the last ten years of my working life I was a counsellor with Primary Care Trusts and worked with ms and cancer charities.
Writing poetry again started when my caring responsibilities came to an end ten years ago and I moved to Brighton. My ash tree died and soon after my mother had died too. It seemed like an omen and change was in the air. I like writing for children so tried that for a bit. ‘The Hole in the Wall’ was published by The Dry Stone Wall Association.
I am not good in the winter at the best of times and the rain and winter days are fast approaching, so I have just cheered myself up mulling though my sketchbooks.
The first of the sketches above illustrated a poetry leaflet of poems about Postman’s park’ I wish I had used the second one for ‘Rue des Abbesses’ in ‘The Puppeteer’s Daughter’ but I am not a professional illustrator so talked myself out of it.
Some of the clowns were for ‘My dad works in the circus’ in ‘Don’t Throw Away the Daisies’ but I was less inhibited then and there were illustrations galore. But regrettably not in colour as too expensive.
Well that’s enough of that. I feel better already and will muddle along through the winter hopefully, write a few more poems but not lose sight of the pleasures of drawing, painting and making films!
The Rue Abbesse
rain laden leaves of the plane trees hover
over the cobbled square of the Rue Abbess
half way up the hill to Montmartre,
where the art nouveau Metro now stands
nearby artists in the past enjoyed a glass of absinthe
the licorice tang on the tongue mingling with the woody
taste of gaulloise watching the thin plumes
of smoke rise before their journey up the hill
busker’s accordions would bleat sad songs
where once blousy tarts with bright red lips
and bulging breasts lolled in doorways waiting
for lizard like pimps full of empty promises
further up the cobbled street withered nuns
in warm robes hurry to light candles
pray for the day of redemption
in the solid white stone of the Sacre Coeur
while nearby tourists gather
with phones and camcorders
seeking out gaudy copies of Van Gogh
or to stand for a silhouette fashioned for 25 euros
before sliding down the hill on the funicular
to the Moulin Rouge, where a glass of champagne
is a rip off and showgirls ply their trade
sweating like leaves laden with rain.
The Ash Tree
from an ancient wood trapped in the garden of a terrace
in South London was the reason I bought the house. I
imagined it whispering words of comfort and even singing
to me if things got tough. As the seasons passed I watched
from my bedroom window, sparrows, blackbirds and
occasionally a while a bright red woodpecker. The new
green growth appeared in spring, giving way to leafy
summer shade, the shedding of autunm leaves, the snow
covered it’s bare branches in winter.
The dry earth around its roots became a secret den for the
children, its weathered trunk created footholds inviting feet
to climb, sturdy ropes supported a swing and a wooden tree
house perched amongst its foliage. Only once did I cautiously
climb it’s twisted trunk to rescue a terrified cockatiel in a
from ‘The Puppeteer’s Daughter’
and from children’s section in ‘Don’t Throw Away the Daisies’
Ego likes to get about
to jump, to hop, to run,
he’s bright and sharp and sparky,
intent on having fun.
When he’s at a party
he’s rude, he’s crass, a bore,
if there is a silence
he’ll always take the floor.
Favourite colours red or gold,
he feeds on chocolate cake,
he doesn’t like to take a nap,
he needs to stay awake.
He likes to keep abreast of things,
he must be in the know,
he’s always in the fast lane,
forever on the go.
Ego’s never lonely,
he’s busy with his schemes,
he doesn’t waste his time on guilt,
he’s always full of beans.
And for this one, your guess is as good as mine!
By the way I don’t rattle on about buying my book, but would be lovely if you could consider buying ‘The Puppeteer’s Daughter’ on line or from City Books in Brighton. I could also do with a kind review on Amazon. Yours hopefully. x