Thursday, June 30, 2011

Personal miracles, for my father

Personal Miracles - Lourdes (mp3)

We journeyed together
to Lourdes,
to the gentle rhythm of gatherings,
immersed in daily rituals
of mass, processions and healing.
Cradled in holy retreat,
we felt safe
away from our daily life.

The hypnotic sound of the rosary
echoing through the sanctuary
the steady hum of prayers
clink of beads,
a mirage of people advancing
to a pulse of adoration.

Feet trailing behind wheels
row upon row, a rippling sea,
as candles burned into night,
melting minds and hearts.
The sick, the dying, the carers
united in personal pilgrimage.

Our daily visits to the grotto,
a shrine to Our Lady’s apparition.
Joined to a chain of people
reaching out to touch
the smooth worn rock,
shiny with caress.
Hope in so many hearts
Belief that by the stroke of their palm
they may feel the power of her touch.

I saw a miracle
in volunteers who carried you
to bathe in healing waters,
in carers, who demonstrated
love and compassion
to us and countless strangers.
It was my miracle to spend time with you,
father and daughter,
reuniting with our people from Waterford.
Timeless reminiscing over cups of tea,
your youth recalled
your face alight
as laughter tickled the air.

You did not get up and walk
but thousands walked with you.
Together there was a miracle
and we both found peace.

Retiro Park, Madrid

Retiro Park, Madrid, For Sarah (mp3)

We chose a table by the lake,
delighting in warm sunshine.
Cafe con leche
vino tinto,
we basked in affection
under a gliding sun.

A lone saxophone player
warbled plaintive tunes,
stark contrast
to a rapturous day,
the air freckled
with light laughter.

It was but a February day,
yet it felt like summer.
Glossy palm trees
waved in the breeze.
It was a flip flop day
in Madrid.

For my emigrant daughter Sarah visiting her in February 2011.


An austere life
of poverty and prayer
weeps from wet
moss grown granite.
Ancient hymns
echo church ruins
circling gravestones
of long forgotten souls.

Hooded cloaks
drape dank dark forests
casting eerie shadows
on a quivering lake.
The evening mist
drifts the hills
Sighs down the valley,
as dusk descends
on a buried past

Silent Secrets

She kept her poems
in a red floral tin
on the top
of the pine dresser
in the kitchen.

Her kitchen had the aroma
of fresh soda bread.
A mug of half-finished tea
stood on the counter.
Her glasses, a note book and pen
were stacked neatly between
the brass clock and the radio.
On the window sill,
she had a vase of fresh flowers,
cut from the garden.

Life was a ritual for Gladys.
It became a ritual for Bert.

She took in washing daily.
She pegged the garments on the line
with perfect precision.
Bert watched her from the window,
admiring her hands at work,
the sun shining on the side of her face,
catching the light in her eyes,
the glossiness of her hair.

When she was outside,
he secretly looked at her poems.
With trembling hands and a beating heart,
he read them,
inhaling her words,
drinking in her unspoken love for him.
He put her poems back carefully
keeping her secrets safe.

Sitting at the table
waiting for the daily rituals to begin,
Bert noticed the tin box was gone.
She left him that day.

He sat in silence,
lost without her
and their silent secrets.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Love surfs the waves

Love surfs the waves (mp3)

Wrapped in the warmth of a June night
under the light of scintillating stars
you point to the Milky Way,
my gaze follows yours
as I catch the moon in your eyes.

We walk hand in hand on the beach,
our whispers sprinkle the dim light.
Your smooth embrace tickles my face,
tumbles my hair,
tingles my toes
in the soft balmy darkness
beneath an ebony sky.

The candy sweet scent of valerian
weaves with the salty sea breeze.
It entangles our love,
unravelling it
over pulsing waves
binding us forever in the surging surf.

29/6/2011 ©

Monday, June 27, 2011

Summer wishes from my garden

Summer wishes from the garden (mp3)

As I laze on my lounger
on a warm June day,
I hear
a choir of bees bumbling,
wind lisping through leaves,
doves cuddling, courting,
the chink of cups
tea pouring,
birdsong circling,
the cat purring
and I close my eyes

I wish
I was the yellow rose
wrapped around the bower
surrounded by budding friendships
so sweetly scented.

I wish
I was the purple clematis
dawdling on the trellis
sipping on sweet raindrops
cupped deep in her bosom.

I wish
I was the pink snapdragon
Peeping through the lavender
bees buzzing her
gossiping all day long.

I wish I was a raspberry
snoozing in the bushes
plump ruby lips
ripe with juicy kisses.

I wish
I was the red maple
long glossy hair
tossed curls tumbling free
flowing in the breeze.

How nice to wake up
to my darling saying
“do I wish
to have a cup of tea.”?
I reply with

I wish.....

26 June 2011 © Maire Morrissey-Cummins

Ode to Josephine

Ode to Josephine, an executors tale (mp3)

Ode to Josephine
An executor’s tale

Her eyes looked out
but she could not see,
her face alert, listening.
Her body engaged, waiting
for a sound
a voice
a scent.

She hid her blindness well.

Now that I recall,
she verged on vagueness.
“That colour suits you”
she would say,
or “your hair is nice today”.
Her focus always deflected.
she was skilfully complimentary.
Childlike during visits
her happiness infectious,
she was an intelligent woman
who could converse on any subject.

Listening to the radio
was her life.

Forever questioning
interested and engaged
she was a gentle soul,
naive in her kindness.
a smiling disposition,
she adored her family.
With no children of her own
she followed the lives
of her nieces and nephews.
She was the aunt
of all aunts.

She lived in hope
that someday she would return home
to Ireland.

On a dark November day
at the age of 90,
she slowly passed away.

We took the boat to Fishguard,
time to bring her home.
At a church service in Wales,
after a lifetime of living there,
we were the only mourners.

Finally at home,
at her funeral in Cork
family and friends gathered
to say “goodbye”.

As they passed by her coffin,
touching her hands
her face
loving gestures,
I silently wondered why
They did not touch her
when alive.

An occasional visit
would have made her day,
her weeks, her years,
for she loved them so much.
There was something
for everyone in her will.

After the funeral,
while cleaning out her home
I found her diary.
Her name on the front
the word “private” underlined.
I opened it
reading snippets
on macular degeneration.

It is a diary
of a woman’s struggle,
her fears and realities
of going blind.
A life with an alcoholic husband,
a wife beater.

My eyes welled up
with sadness
when I thought of her isolation
so many years of darkness,
seeing the deterioration
in her words written on the page.
And of Uncle Bill
his military beatings
when drunk.

A diary of 30 years
of gradual stages of blindness,
her life's secrets held in my hands.
I held it close to my heart.
I continue to hold it close
remembering her beauty,
happy to have at least
brought her home.

27 June 2011 © Maire Morrissey-Cummins

Friday, June 24, 2011

bare feet of summer haiku

window open

to summer feet bared

curtain dances

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Tumbling Shells

Walking through the woods,
sodden leaves cling to the soil,
a squishing sound under foot.
Bare branches cross my path
where circular mirrors dangle
with the reflections of youthful faces,
of family, long since dead.
They smile at me serenely.
I try to speak but my voice
had no sound.
When I look closer,
The faces turn to flowers.
There is a heavy scent
of lavender.


A white poodle was under the cherry tree.
A brass key swishes from his tail.
I motioned towards him
saw my name and house number
engraved in blood red ink.
Overhead, I heard bells chiming.
When I looked up, there were shells
tumbling as snow from a flame sky.
They landed in front of me,
melting into tiny yellow crabs.
I turned, facing a bronze archway
leading out to a lane.
In front of me was a tiny cottage
with a red door and white handle.
My name and number was on the door.
I stood outside, brass key in hand,
unsure about entering.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The Great Blasket Islands

The Great Blasket Islands (mp3)

Visits long ago
to the Blasket Islands,
to untouched areas
on the Dingle peninsula
came to mind
on this sleet winter’s eve.

The peninsula,
nestled in heather mountains.
The coastline,
tongues of lonely white sand.
waved rocks,
drenched in blue mussels
tide pools,
alive with shrimps and periwinkles
A sea-salted life,
unspoiled and free.

Today, only marine life remains,
but I still hear the music,
our native language,
the voices of Seanchaí,
the ballads, seanόs,
Peig Sayers
who shaped my school years.
Her renditions of island life,
mad piseόgs,
handed down
from generation to generation.

Stories of
islanders huddled together,
under thatch.
Open turf fires
cooking pot on a hook.
The sweet air wafting
from clay pipe tobacco.
A pinch of snuff
sniffed from a silver box.
Nursing a glass
of neat Poitín, uisce beatha,
The strong smell of tweeds,
and geansaí báinín.

I think of times lost,
changed forever.
Of an island life
where only cottage ruins remain
and goats roam free.
An Blascaod Mór
my history, my heritage.

* Poitín and uisce beatha = water of life in gaelic, very strong alcohol made from potatoes.
* Seanos = gaelic for storytellers who sing without music.
* geansai bainin = knitted woolen sweaters, aran island, thick sheeps wool in cream with lots of patterns.
* piseόgs, = superstitions in gaelic.

Captured moments

Captured moments of Ivy, my grandmother (mp3)

Captured moments
Maire Morrissey-Cummins

A spark
of a memory
of her bare bronzed arm
wrapped around my shoulder,
her head leaning
towards mine,
our hair tussled
tossed together in the sea breeze,
played like a scene
from the reels of my mind.

Her sun dress
of white cotton
with pink roses.
Her cardigan tied
loosely around her neck.
The sun casting light
on the side
of her nut brown face.
Our eyes laughing,
Grandmother and grand-daughter,
resting by the wall
on the promenade of Tramore strand.
The sound of the waves, soothing,
the colour of the sand, warming
in the yellow glow
of summer.

Her smile captured
like a faded photograph.
I think back to that day
remembering her,
I feel her warmth,
and I smile.

Photo of my grandmother in her 20's

Letter to Sarah, my daughter in Madrid

Letter to Sarah (mp3)

Letter to my daughter
Maire Morrissey-Cummins

I used your mug for my tea today
I thought it needed airing.
Your name etched in green
with the Irish flag flying,
a white shamrock growing on the side.
It’s a fine mug,
a gift from your Kylemore days,
befitting your name
testament to your Irishness.

As I hold it up, it catches the light.
I see the flash of orange,
but your Dutch life comes to mind
and then a splash of red
taints my thoughts
as I acknowledge
your new Spanish life.

With your Irish mug in hand,
you are my cailín na hÉireann
but you barely lived here.

The sun is shining today,
the garden radiant
with a glint of your touch
in the chard, still growing strong.
And the mustard cress,
from one seed, a massive mound.
You, who had no interest in gardening
have left so much of your spirit behind.
The yellow rose has more buds
than it could ever bloom
and the white Lilac is so sweetly scented
especially for you.

I smile to myself,
mo leanbh beag bándearg
and I wish you were here today.
Lunch in the garden has no appeal without you.
The new teak loungers
lonely on the deck,
they await your return.
The fold-up table, weathered
from our years of use.
It holds memories of your wonderful salads,
displayed and presented lovingly
in the wide ceramic bowl.
I think of the countless pots of tea,
the elderflower cordial
and the jam we made together
as we journeyed
through our Greystones years.

I look at the garden,
there are traces of you everywhere
in all your glory.

Note: Kylemore days – Kylemore Abbey Boarding School, Galway, Ireland where my daughter studied for five years. The school is famous but has recently been closed. It is still a tourist destination, very popular.

my cailín na hÉireann = Gaelic for my Irish girl

mo leanbh beag bándearg = Gaelic for my little pink girl

Saffron moon

At the fold of day
a veil shrouds the hills
as rising fog drifts
over tapering fields.

Rain falls softly,
dimpling the river.
It’s sombre waters swagger
beneath a narrow bridge.

Rambling oak trees line
steep grassy banks.
Ferns furl
their long slender fingers
into tight fists.
They recoil
into rooted mouldy stone.

Moss carpets the woodland,
the earthy air, damp
as dusk slinks in.

A murder of crows
sweep the sky
smothering the light.
they swoop to roost
on tall tree tops.

a rustling murmur
whispers softly, sweetly.
They sleep
under a saffron moon.

by a blackening night.

I wish - daydreams from my window

Daydreams from my window
Maire Morrissey-Cummins

I wish
I was the chubby grey cat
curled up tight, dozing
in the warm sunshine,
lying behind the flowerpots,
a symphony in the garden unfold.

I wish
I was the scarlet rose hips,
high above the trellis,
eying the changing colours of the day,
to warm whispers from the trees,
eaves dropping
on secrets of scented rose buds,
or the bitter woes of sobbing poppies,
with hot pink hibiscus,
on the hidden underworld of leaves.

I wish
I was a striped bumble bee
whizzing from lilac to lavender,
or a fluttering butterfly
sipping on sweet nectar,
or a fat spider,
weaving silken threads
spinning trapped lives to death.

How nice it is
to daydream,
as I sit looking out the window
on a barren winter garden,
with the promise of spring,
the hope of summer,
of light and warmth
on a slate winter's day.

Anemones and Shells

Anemones and Shells (mp3)

When I recall my past
It was a sea-kissed life
of summers spent roaming
the Rabbit Burrows,
cradled by dunes
beyond Tramore strand,
adventures in the Saleens,
daring quicksand
of swimming with dad,
high jumping waves
falling, laughing
great gulps of salt water
free and fearless
in our bare bronzed years.

It was a salted life
of wave-washed castles,
of tide pools
alive with translucent shrimps,
carmine anemones
sucked tight to the rocks
periwinkles, hermit crabs, a world of shells
textured algae, salted,
crisping in the heat
our faces stinging with sand and hot sunshine
we spent hours with nets
exploring pools.

After months and years
of living near the sea
the landscape became part of me.
I watched fuchsias pirouette the breeze,
sea pinks sway on cliff tops
valerian, a candy floss pink,
sweetly scented.
We picked them
and pressed them into books.

I remember my childhood
with a skipping heart
when summers seemed to shine eternal.
The rock pools taught us to treasure nature
togetherness bred a strong sense of self.
We had a respect for the sea,
the wonder of freedom.
when I open a book
I often find a flower
and shells - this child is forever combing.

Mysterious Sprinkles

Mysterious Sprinkles (mp3)

She gathers love in a bottle
sprinkles it on the lonely.
She wanders the world
capturing crushed hearts
to repair them.

She bears hope in a tin,
scatters it high in the sky.
It catches the wind
dispersing belief and aspiration
to those who despair.

She roams red hot deserts
with a glass full of happiness.
She sails across silent seas
to settle within the hearts
of those who pause to listen.

Holding your warmth

Holding your warmth (mp3)

I stand in my kitchen,
bronzed feet cold on cream tiles.
Sipping camomile tea from your favourite mug,
I clasp it tightly
holding your warmth.

Looking out the window to the stillness of night,
thoughts of you unravel
and I am back in the mountains of Tenerife
as we gaze in wonder
at El Teide.

Almond blossoms circle snow peaks,
the burgundy rock-face ablaze with wildflowers,
trees of white heather rooted in dank earth,
the wind catching clouds, hurling them across our path
and the cold, shivering in my shorts
as I pose for a photo, under a dragon tree.

What fun
to find a mountain cafe
where we feast on traditional gofio,
zuppa de pollo and tortilla.
Through shuttered windows,
moss hangs from trees
as thick fog swirls, skyward.
We shiver back to the car
laughing and joking,
delighting in tastes of authentic Tenerife
and slightly chilled by the eerie
northern terrain.

Heading south to warmer climes,
we pass sleepy terra cotta towns
luminous in gliding sunshine.
My ears pop when we round terraces
stacked with bananas ripening
an expanse of apricot fields
stretching before us.
Great plantations straddle the hills
sweeping down to the coast.

Palm trees sigh in baking heat,
Bougainvillea cascade
slopes in hot pinks and reds
as we drive through parched valleys
of cacti and silver aloe vera,
down to a turquoise sea.

I can hear the waves mounting craggy rocks,
the surge of surf spitting and splaying
onto the black lava beach.
I feel my feet burning on hot sun-kissed sand
as I leap, sprinting my way to the water.

I see fishing boats rocking in the cove.
The white-washed village set in adjacent hills
slumbering in sizzling heat.
I feel sun on my back and a faint smell of lotion.
I hear your voice call my name.
I turn, and you smile, camera poised.
Watching you, I bask in our affection

I turn to make more tea.
I feel a deep serenity.
As I look out the window a magenta sky
melts the darknesss.
Ribbons of red, orange and purple
burn into a blazing sun.
It is morning in Greystones.
I miss you,
our time together sustains me,
holding your warmth.

Maire Morrissey-Cummins
April 28, 2011

Thursday, June 16, 2011


sultry morning
an arrow of swallows
dart the clouds

Monday, June 13, 2011

May gardening haiku

may gardening
starlings circle a blackbird
with a worm

may gardens
silver birch weeps the lake
lilies catch her tears


may breeze
foxgloves freckled lips quiver
whistling a tune

herb garden
parsley passing thyme
In the sunshine

may noon
choir of campanula bells
buzz with bees

may gardening
starlings circle a blackbird
with a worm

may breeze
purple lupins point
dancing towards the sea

cloudless day
love in a mist
mirrors the sky

trees swish and sway
each leaf a different sound
breezy symphony

may afternoon
bees gather nectar
in honey sunshine

gardening break
in my mug of tea
the sun

grass cuttings
a swarm of bees nesting
in the compost bin

may sunshine
foxgloves freckled lips quiver
whistling the breeze

garden weeding
the scent of fennel still
on my hands

hedge clippings
in the wheelbarrow
autumn mixed with spring

Cat haiku

sitting on the grass
cat massages me
back and forth

dead thrush on the mat
a proud cat searches my eyes
for approval

evening sunlight
her nose smudges the window
admiring herself

spring gardening
his claw marks still
on the tree trunk

her kneading paws
the rhythm of my fingers
on the laptop

blackbird skips the lawn
head and paws on the gate
a bee zooms by

lazy sunday
her body purring
into mine

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Greystones beach in November

After the rain,
the speckled glint of shimmering sand
is now muddy brown.
Like a blind, closed tight on the warmth of summer,
the winter beach has shrunken in,
changing the colours of my day
to a darker palette, shades of grey.
The sun shrivelled
pale faced and worn,
as the cold season begins.

Seagulls a beacon
against a slate November sky,
their sound, comfort to a lonely beach.
The steps down to the water, pea green
slimy weed on stone,
bright against an ink-rippled tide.

Seaweed colours bleed into my mind
while textures playfully mingle.
Salt air stings my nostrils
caresses my lungs with wellness.
Sea sounds carry from the shores of Wales
as I crunch the length of the milk tide.

I look to the horizon and imagine another me
walking a beach somewhere there,
listening to my thoughts
as they channel the sea.
Grateful for the gift of nature,
I look over my shoulder,
my footprints remain
solid, as in a freshly cemented path
their sound, echoes in the shells.

Remembering my Great Grandfather 11.11.11

Remembrance Day W.T. Pickering 11.11.11 (mp3)

My Great Grandfather
W. T. Pickering, G/3371, 2nd Battalion Royal Fusiliers
Died 1916 at the Somme, commemorated on the Thipeval Memorial, France

Remembrance day ..
A field of bright red poppies dance
As I walk hand in hand with my children
Through the battle fields of the Somme.
In my pocket, I have a bunch of wheat
A token memory from where he fell
At peace, to have walked where he walked.

As the poppies begin to fade....
I hear the thunder of guns, shrieking shells
I see a vast sea of dismembered bodies
A No-Man’s Land of mud and wire
A military display of golden fireworks
Casting light on this horrific hell on earth.

For underneath the poppies lie, the remains
Of so many men, who died, blown to pieces;
Where a river of blood will forever bleed
Passed on from generation to generation
The great loss of war, which nobody wins
As I remember William Thomas Pickering
So far away from home....

Frail, Bald and Alone

Cold face of poverty (mp3)

The cold face of poverty

It was a wet November day
on the motorway to Cork.
Waiting at traffic lights
a tiny man shuffled towards me,
frail, bald and alone.

His piercing eyes beseeching,
palms outstretched, imploring.
His face ravaged with fear
his shame stirred shame in me
as I turned my face away,
I saw others do the same.

I felt awkward discomfort,
it changed rapidly
to a sickening fear
as the cold face of recession
the demise of my country
the pain of my people
stood before me
in this little man,
an ache so immense
I had buried it deep.
The bubble burst a year ago
but he had just burst mine.

Faced now with utter revulsion
abject anger towards our government
our bankers and developers
those sneaky golden circles
as my eyes met his
I saw my reflection.

For in his tiny frame,
I saw our fragile nation
a country on its knees
begging for a bail out.

In his isolation
I felt my vulnerability
huge impending loss
as my children face emigration.

In his baldness
I saw the naked masses
poverty and pain
still crushing us, the people

For this little man
is me.

A melting morning

A melting morning (mp3)

After the snow
birds swim the sky
wings outstretched, exuberant
warmed by a light drizzle
falling on pear coloured fields
they drink in a saturated land

Gliding from cedar to spruce
great canopies of army green,
gulls alight from a satin sky
to branches covered in lichen
where pistachio ivy clings

Sweeping over a shrouded sea,
liquorice crows blotch the horizon.
Blackbirds gather
on the arching limbs
of my silver birch tree,
in a melting morning

Another year my child

Hawthorn blossoms
pearled the hedgerows,
as birds rejoiced
lilting the trees
in the promise of new life,
chiming the air
with heartbeat rhythms,
a cotton crisp spring
as baby buds peeped in.

I carried you,
felt you,
but I never got to hold you.

Another year has passed
and I am lost,
lonely in the black cold of winter,
remembering the day
you left me.

We never said goodbye.

My tears
frozen in time.
Echoes of songs
that never were,
of dreams
that can never be,
my nights haunted
until the dawn.

Fog blankets the fields,
the sky expresses my need.
I hear the clouds parting
I speak with the sunrise
of my love for you,
your movement, your sound.
I would speak of anything
if I could bring you back
but there is only thick frost
and winter dwells in my heart

I see the spring,
but know
I will never feel your warmth.

Sea haiku

The sea seasons

bare feet sift soft sand
waves whisper foamy secrets
of bright days to come

sand shimmers with shells
waves tumble in unison
on a glistening day

shimmering sundown
a butter sun melts the sky
on a golden strand

sand laden waves
pound sea crusted rocks
cockles dig deeper

Friday, June 10, 2011

ripples haiku

so many ripples
on this lake
so many years

Rusty Clippings

Rusty Clippings (mp3)

The old lady who lives
in the house on the seafront
stands with rusty shears
trimming her hedge of purple Hebe.
elbows bent, she clips salty air
hoping for visits from passers-by.

A sprawling house
collapsing from years of disrepair,
her world exists in a solitary room.
Loneliness seeps from
faded rose patterned wallpaper.
Curtains sag, stale with senility.
A tired burgundy carpet
threads the stairs
to a forgotten world.
Framed photographs
stare from the mantelpiece,
their faces buried in her memory.

Her eyes look to the sea,
absorbed by the soothing swish of the waves.
Her life, held in the ripples
of an ever changing tide
and the rusty shears by the hedge.

© Maire Morrissey-Cummins

I wonder

In the stillness of the morning
I open my window.
I wonder if it is you
who calls me?
through trembling leaves
lilting birdsong
a cool breeze embrace
gently touching my face.

I scan the sky
clouds drifting to the east.
I search for your face
a sign, a trace.
I watch the sun rise behind dark spruce
shadows streak the fields,
a circle of light glides the sea.

I close my eyes
basking in new born rays.
I wonder could it be your glow?
I hear a faint whisper
rustle beneath the red maple.
I sense your aura
as baby pink rosebuds bloom.

House martins skim the trees
clipping in and out of nests.
Dewdrops drip from their beaks
to nourish their young.
I wonder can they see you?
I watch in silence
in wonder.

Idyllic Altamont

Old stone pillars flank the entrance
draped in ivy, brambles and weeds.
An avenue of copper beech
curves to an abandoned house,
where a peacock’s cry
resounds from purple walled gardens
at idyllic Altamont.

Weeping Aspens quiver
dappling sunlit walls.
A faded facade lies buried
under a myriad of trees,
vines meander the windows
and moss creeps the steps.

From the doorway,
a thick path spreads through lawns,
lined by pyramids of clipped box
sweeping beneath arches of Yew.
Trellised roses perfume the view
down to a lily clotted lake.

Swans with their young
forge a path through yellow lilies
dipping long necks into inky waters,
drifting warm sunshine.
Bird song fills the lake
lacing the trees with lilting melodies.

A woodland of Rhododendron,
gnarled branches of purplea and pinks
bracelet the lake,
leading down to a dank bog
swamped with giant rhubarb
and grassy reeds swishing the breeze.

A diverging path
twists to a gushing waterfall,
crashing into the river Slaney.
Dense dark Ash spiral
to a bright grassy clearing,
to intoxicating views
of the Blackstairs mountains.

A feast of surprises,
at each twist and turn
with a seat to sit and ponder.
A place of peace and beauty,
freedom to roam with nature
Oh How I long
to return to Altamont.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Sunday Departures

Sunday Departures (mp3)

It ‘s Sunday,
your day of departure
I wake in a panic.

We breakfast
listening to the radio,
silently reading newspapers.
I glance at you,
and that dreaded feeling
slinks in,
my heart sinking
to my stomach.

Time after time we say “goodbye”.
The longer you stay,
the harder the parting.
I will never get used to it,
How I wish there was an easier way.

Tickets, passport, the usual checks,
I smile, masking tears.
My whole being shrinks
my heart aching,
as we drive to the Air coach.
I break the silence apologising
“I don’t feel so well”
because I know it’s hard for you too.

With a kiss and a cuddle
you hold me tight,
fraught with emotions, I tremble.
I shudder you away
saying "we might skype later".
Head down, you enter the bus.
I turn, sobbing my way to the car
waving through a veil of tears.

I bite my lip,
breathe a heavy sigh
swiping my eyes with my hands.
My body heaves
all the way home.

I stand in our hallway
in deafening silence,
The house feels immense.
No husband, no children,
I wonder where have you all gone
and why am I still here

I feel an overwhelming tiredness
dragging myself upstairs.
Lying on the bed,
I receive a text from you saying
“I feel the same way,
I will be home again soon,
love you ”
and I cry,
I shed heartbroken tears
missing you,
missing us
of days and weeks alone,
wondering how many more years.

I'm wishing life away
to be with you,
as the cycle kickstarts anew.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Tangerine Morning

Frost carpets the fields
sloping to a crinkled sea.
The air,
cotton crisp
as spring leaps in.

Satin crows
descend from a silver sky.
Squabbling, they graze
on chilled dewdrops.

The sunrise,
a red ribbon glow,
warms tall tree trunks
basking in gliding sunlight.

A flame horizon
burns a candy stripe sky
on a tangerine morning.

Dove day afternoon

A dry stone wall
of moss-grown granite
lush undulating plains
thorny gorse bushes
at a curvaceous hollow
where a copper stream gurgles below.

Sheep fluff velvet meadows
mirroring cotton clouds above.
they graze on pea green fields.
Blotched blurs clamber
to higher ground.

Lilting melodies
lace the trees,
sweetening the air
with white apple blossom
on a dove day afternoon.


lilts the lake
yellow lilies bloom

Haiku aspen

wagtails skim
quivering aspen
mallards duck the lake

Haiku Lily

may gardens
silver birch weeps the lake
lilies catch her tears

haiku poppies

wild poppies
stray barley fields
wandering home