In light of the current pandemic – a short poem.
Lockdown, locked tight,
as day turns to night
and night to day,
today we will chalk off
another day and talk of
Concentration of will
will save us. Yet still
the doubters, deniers
continue to defy us.
They continue playing,
while thousands are praying
for loved ones they have lost.
© Wally Smith 2020
A little late for St Valentine’s Day, but love is all around us at any time of the year.
Let there be benches in park gardens
with fences to climb over, helping hands,
Let there be bunches of bud roses
in pink tissue wrappers tied with raffia bows,
Let there be rows of cinema goers, a flickering film,
buckets of popcorn between her and him,
Let amber candles light their gazes, a soulful tune,
sharing gooey moments with one spoon,
Let there be featherlight caresses,
hired suits and taffeta dresses,
And during and ever after all this
romantic bliss, Let there be love.
Our local Writing Group recently did an in class exercise I though was deceptively challenging. The aim is to write a narrative where the first sentence begins with A, the second with B etc through the alphabet. Sounds simple. But to make the writing flow naturally is where the challenge lies. It is an exercise in wordsmanship and the craft of sentance structure.
Give it a try and post your attempts! No prizes, just sharing.
Here’s mine to start us off.
My Dog Story, A to Z
Armed with my first cup of tea of the day, I had set out along the seashore on that winter’s morning in an attempt to blow away the cobwebs from my eyes with some fresh air. Becalmed on the beach, a few hundred metres ahead, lay what I thought was a large tree trunk. Carried by the previous night’s gales, it must have been dislodged from a coastal cliff. Dragging myself towards it, I sensed my lack of sleep catching up with me. Even as I approached, I sensed something was not quite right. For the perceived trunk was changing before my eyes! Great God, it was a dog, bloated and swollen from its drowning! Holding my hand over my mouth to quell my queasiness, I stood still and stared at this monstrosity. I’d seen a dead body before but not one which had spent time in the water. Just having tea and no breakfast now proved to have been a very judicious move. Killed before it went in or because it went in, I wondered. Lingering to find out really wasn’t an option. My sensibilities lay in shreds. Normally, I’m such a ‘together’ person. Only the sight of this poor animal – someone’s much loved pet perhaps – had moved me to tears and in other ways less desirable in the breeze. Praying wasn’t my style, not for a person and certainly not for an animal. Queer how it looked, however. Resting beached whale-like is such an ungainly demise, quite surreal. Surely it would be missed by its owner. Turning away I headed back along the coast. Under the rising sun, I was finally warming up. ‘Visceral’ was the word that tagged the image in my memory. Walking onwards I finished my tea which thankfully had stayed down and had warmed me inside out. Xavier would have finished his night shift and would soon be back a su casa where I was spending my mid-term break. Yawning still, but feeling more settled now, I was regaining vigour with every step. Zipping along the final stretch up to the house, I opened the door to normality once again but never forgot that dog on Playa Gandia.
© Sheila Ash, 2020
Some of my stories have been podcast on YouTube.
They’re read by Chris Heron at Tall Tale TV. This is the playlist.
Link to YouTube
My first collection of poetry is published and available on the Feed-A-Read website. The title is Please Remove Snowshoes Before Entering. Price £4.99 + postage
Also available from me at Swan Poets in Halesworth, part of the Suffolk Poetry Society group of café poets.
The Halesworth WriteTypes group of writers meet every Tuesday in the de Argenteins café/bar in Halesworth, Suffolk.
The venue is a quaint property in Halesworth’s Thoroughfare and appropriately named the Ancient House and is now de Argenteins, named after an historic family from the area, a ghost of which is said to still haunt the establishment.
Members of the group have published novels, short stories, poetry and academic works, as well as plays performed at the annual local INK Festival: https://inkfestival.org/