Country Churches

Astride the KTM beast, we ride
the country roads of New England, passing mini
country churches not big enough to swing
an axe (other than the verbal kind). At the crossroads
in one hamlet, there are two, along with a pub
and a servo, and I wonder if on Sundays
the population of around 150 evenly splits
itself between the green fibro Catholic and the beige fibro
Anglican House of God diagonally opposite. Or do the agnostics
and atheists muddy the holy water? Truth is
I’ve never seen any flock
to attendance, so who goes there? The farmers
praying for rain? The fossickers praying
for that nugget, the alcoholics praying for forgiveness
for beating their wives and children senseless after one
too many at the public house on a Friday night?
Or are these houses of worship mere relics
of the past along with the town’s faith
on account of all that flood, fire
and filicide?

©️2020 K Price

In the Paddock

Leaning into corner after corner on a wheat-
fringed country road, we come upon
a pair of vintage Renaults sitting side by side
in the paddock, like an old couple enjoying
the sun. But age has wearied them and the years
condemned to a slow rusting death, the for-sale sign
long faded. Who drove them to their final destination
full of hope they would go as a bonded
pair to loving home?

©️2020 K Price

Isadora

I’m riding pillion on the KTM beast
when our silhouette on the damp bitumen paints my scarf flying
like a Siamese fighter’s tailfin in the slipstream

and I think of you
Isadora

and wonder if in that nano-second that the forces of the universe conspired
to smash you into the cobblestones of the Riviera
you had a chance to think:

How absurd!

I tuck in the delinquent ends
I wouldn’t want your spectacular end
to be in vain.

©️2020 K Price

Anna

The sea knows
loss, its ancient suspirations inhale
terra firma grit by grit

The sea knows
abyssal hobgoblins well up
from their deep-rutted trenches
even on sunshiny days
they manifest their stinking grotesquery
on sabulous shores

The sea knows
violence
never sleeps
is always sighing

Like you the sea knows
some things
are worse
than dying.

© 2018 Karen Price

 

 

Vale Cynthia Jobin

Sunflowers

On my return to blogging in April, I was deeply saddened to discover that one of my favourite poets of all time had died in December 2016.

Cynthia Jobin was a blogging friend and a masterful poet, whose art was superior in form, structure and rhythm. But what I love most in her work is the way she infused it with mischief. Her intellect and humour shines through her poetry.

Sadly, Cynthia’s WordPress site is no longer up. I hope her unpublished work will not be lost.

I will miss you, Little Old Lady. You were a beautiful light in the darkness.

https://uspandey.com/2016/12/25/goodbye-cynthia-jobin/

Shanghai

Tonight

I’m in a city of 14.50 million

(give or take a few, including me)

souls. I know no-one

here. I’m a nano-human, a speck

in the smog. I make myself big

riding the subways with no-one

with light-coloured hair. No-one notices

the gweilo; the ghost-person, I think,

until I step into the deluge at Shanghai

Library, and a dark-haired

girl steps in time beside me,  her umbrella

banishing the rain, her words, my ghostliness

“Where are you going?

Can I take you there?”

image

 

 

 

The Unanswerable Question

Cynthia Jobin, over at  littleoldladywho.net, is one of the finest poets I’ve read. Her poems are exquisitely crafted, evocative, and at times wonderfully mischievous.

A recent poem of Cynthia’s – The Palpable Obscure – is a spine-tingling evocation of the ongoing mystification endured by those of us who have experienced the death of a loved one.  In it, she writes:

Once a day, at least, I stop to wonder
where you are.

Is this puzzlement not at the very heart of the Human Condition?

If my father were alive today, the 27th November 2015, he would be 83. I started this blog mainly as a response to the lingering grief I felt about his dying. And this poem, which I first posted on the 27th November 2010, is about the day he died.

Like Cynthia, I still wonder…

Eternal Mysteries ( a repost)

With the ring back on your finger
you sighed and slipped away
but forever it’s a mystery
where you went that day

Did you see them watching you
and whispering in your ear?
When you took your final journey,
did you know that they were there?

Did you sense that we were not?
No-one can ever know,
yet child-like we still ask ourselves –
that day, where did you go?

————————–

Hiiumaa

bb-hm2

When the sun turns
away to southern lands
we find ourselves awake
on a strange, familiar shore
where t
hose who’ve gone
before sleep beneath moss
in forest
graves, and wild apples
jump the fences

Across the Baltic Sea
history comes full circle.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Remembering 3/11

bb-rte4

End of a Dream

C-sharp minor
plays through the eaves
of this house
wind-cold emptiness, the ambient noise
of destruction
where laughter once lived.

Shoji, last opened
to plum-blossom whispers
now lachrymose with silent
half-life

a bird singing
for no-one.

xxx

Act of God

Power of Poetry

3/11 – The Japan Times

 

 

Weekly Photo Challenge: Scale

bb - scale

Red Bishop – Kwazulu – Natal, South Africa

 Microcosmos

Beauty at scale rarely seen
by human eye, but inbetween
lush blades of grass daily spy
a microworld of strange small fry

As this mini-jungle wakes
from dark of night, a lone ant slakes
his thirst from fresh dewdrops bright
reflecting snails in love’s delight

Airfields of apian craft at ready
take flight from rouged poppies, heady
with blue jewels sparkling far and wide
on backs of bees on buzzing ride

A mighty dung beetle battles
sticks arresting rolling chattels
from onward journey, this daily testing
to construct his place of resting

Inkblot-eyes of springtails watch
(in somersault) nymphs slowly hatch
themselves from deep and watery vault
and caterpillars as they moult

A miniverse that’s quite astounding,
with creatures, strange and weird, abounding.

—————————————————————————————————————-bb

For more entries to last week’s WPC, see The Daily Post.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Twinkle

Often
in the crowd
a ghost flies by
in a smile, in a walk
in the twinkle of an eye.

bb-twinkle

A Wild Night in Tokyo

For more entries to this week’s photo challenge, see The Daily Post. (Although, when I last looked, their pingbacks weren’t working.)

Kill Your Darlings Not Your Editor

Given the grammar and punctuation transgressions on this blog, you’ll probably find it hard to believe that I qualified as a book editor over a decade ago. *Sharp intakes of breath around the Blogosphere* Yes, you know who you are. 😀 Breathe easy; I’ve yet to give up my day job.

What I do know is that editing is critical to the writing process and essential for, at the very least, published works and professional documents. And what I did learn in studying for my editing qualification is the need for tact when dealing with authors and their work, no matter how awful either.

At work, I edit my own writing before and after I get someone else to edit it. Even so, when I do the final edit, I’m often bemused to find a number of errors remaining. When it comes to prose, I know my weak areas: omission of functions words, homonym misuse and comma confusion, to name but a few, so I know what to look for. But, poetry? I really have no idea.

So it is with heartfelt gratitude, appreciation and admiration that I thank Linda Cosgriff (a.k.a. The Laughing Housewife) for the gift of her editing expertise on my first poetry collection.

Linda is what the publishing industry (if she were to put herself out there) would consider an exceptional editor: she knows her stuff, and she is unafraid to say what needs to be said on both form and style but does so in an encouraging, tactful and respectful manner. And she sends gifts. 😀

I’ve taken most of her advice…
..OK, I admit I’ve granted clemency to some of my poor darlings.

Any errors remaining in the book are purely mine.

You have done me an immense favour, Linda dear. Thank you for the gift of your friendship, your valued input and the Olympic Games bookmark with the inspiring quote. ♥♥♥

bb-kyd