Poetry, Reflective

My First Brush

Small and peculiar, I was never one to demand centre stage.

Introvert and singular, even I failed to notice me age.

At the troublesome age of fourteen I obviously sought a gaze or two. The clothes became peculiar and singular, while I remained small and introvert. I should have been a worry for all concerned yet no one noticed me at all.

In a small town, as introverted as myself, I carved a non-name for myself. My outgoing confidence betrayed my inward awkwardness. My two large brothers protected my ice maiden cool. But that couldn’t last forever.

Pubs, pubs and more pubs. What else is a girl to do? I smoked and drank like a man, dressed like a wood nymph, froze people out. Until I met the dad of a man who was a friend of a friend. I liked that friend. I thought he was cool.

A drunken night, no words exchanged just gazes. “You confuse me,” said my friend. “You have no idea what you do to men.” Hmm, and I downed my pint and rolled another. Cold and indifferent, I shrugged. The dad of the friend (who I thought was cool), said,

“Your face is exquisite. I would like to photograph you.”

“All right,” said I and got into his car.

We head out of town, this dad and I, the friend (his son) in the back with me.

We pull up to a barn, a converted barn and I’m not as impressed as I should be.

I remember little else, I was pretty drunk I guess, though I do recall the light switch.

It was on the wrong side of the wall and it mattered to me. Much more than what could’ve happened next.

I woke up the next day, in my bed in my house with my mum making breakfast downstairs.

My recollection was vague but I knew I’d been good, my friend had been there the whole time. For months subsequent I asked this chap, “Are the pictures done then, are they okay?” He just smiled and looked kind of sheepish.

Finally I asked and he said, “Lisa, they are the pictures of a quiet beauty taken by a lecherous, drunken old bastard.” He stopped short of adding, “Who, if I hadn’t have been there, would’ve taken full advantage of your own insobriety.” 

That friend of mine remained confused about me but I became wiser that night. 

For dirty old men are there throughout life but to get into one’s car is not right.

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Diary, Poetry, Reflective

It’s bad news I’m afraid.

 

 

Optimism fills my bones.

It courses through my veins like a pulsating light of hope that

Only dims when I look into your confused eyes.

 

A reassuring smile appears.

It forces my mouth into a defiant line of strength and courage that

Quivers with the effort of it all as you return the smile.

 

We’re here to rule things out.

 

You see that lift? That’s where you want to be.

But you can’t go through those doors…

You go out here, then left, straight on, round to the right.

Past the ‘staff only’ sign, another left and next right.

You want C8.

I stopped listening at ‘lift’.

I only heard ‘C8’

 

It’s a quest to complete, then.

More information than I first thought had gone in and

In just five minutes we’re waiting again.

 

A mere three hours after our arrival,

The similarity with Beetlejuice, it’s myriad of characters nervously await

Their fate in death’s waiting room.

 

We’re here to rule things out.

 

Scan done, results pending then sending

Back to where we just came from.

That room filled with stories,

With the trials of souls who just

Want to know more.

What to do next?

How to progress?

 

Familiar faces still pensive and tense.

Our Ambulatory Care family of a day that feels like a week and then

The doctor calls us in.

 

All smiles, we enter behind him

And sit down on two mismatched chairs, one blue, one brown to listen

‘It’s bad news I’m afraid.’

 

But we’re here to rule things out.

 

A tumour, a swelling is what they’ve found.

The headaches, confusion, memory loss,

As my face goes numb, my hands grow heavy,

My throat constricts until I feel I may burst.

You’re smiling.

‘Well, if that’s what you say,

Then, yeah, can we go?’

 

What we came to rule out has cruelly been ruled in.

More scans tomorrow, more waiting to see where we go next but

For now we can leave.

 

Armed with steroids and instructions to follow.

The enormity of it all has evaded you but not me who must now drive us home

Who must now tell our boys.

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Poetry, Reflective

Ego: a sense of self-esteem

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As a child I soared, adored.

Only later, in the eyes of others,

Did I shrink and wither in the shadow

Of my brothers.

Unsure still of my place, face,

Features unseen, a stranger reflected

In the mirrors that adorn walls at home,

Unaffected.

A mother of sons loud, proud.

My position more certain, more assured.

I look on in awe as they look to me,

Soared, adored.

 

 

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Poetry

Father

So many cliches when it comes to a dad

and daughter’s relationship that we once had.

For as we grow older and wiser maybe,

The dad that we had is not the one that we see.

 

 

Do you remember the nodding birds that you carved me?

The Dutch clogs that you made for my dolly called Crumb?

Do you recall the red Disco Belt you hid in the tree?

The flower press adorably painted by mum?

 

Do you remember the Capri from old man, Joe Kiss?

The bizarre gift of a Womble from a lady who lived near,

Who thought I was younger than her grandson but this

Was untrue, I was actually older by a year…

 

I remember you painting my skirting board in gloss paint,

Whilst I skipped out to go on a Sunday School trip,

I was in my ‘holy-holy’ phase, quite a Saint,

It didn’t last long as I let the mask slip.

 


It is said that when we decide upon marriage,

So as to avoid an inevitable disparage,

Choices are influenced by the first man we know.

So traits of our father will be found in our beau.

 

So for better or worse you and Nige are alike.

Quiet and strong, a bit mad.

With no father to guide him,

Love him or chide him,

He looks to you too like a dad.

 

Now here we have my most treasured memory,

One that meant more years after it became one.

Picture me ill, frightened and lonely,

A new baby demanding me down to my bone.

I can see you stood there by the side of my bed,

Opal Fruits in one hand, the other; Lucozade.

‘Hello Lizzie, I was just on my way home,’ you said.

‘Hello dad,’ replied I, my day had been made.

 

I guess I just thought you’d been asked to call in on me,

By a worried mother who just couldn’t make it.

But when told of my most treasured ‘dad memory’,

She confirmed she’d known nothing of your first visit.

 

It took me right back to the days of old Joe.

Of renovating that wonderful old Ford Capri.

Those long summer days (oh where did they go?)

The solitude of us, you and me

xxx

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Poetry, Reflective

Loss

lucie-and-tiggy-largeIt’s a shame you never loved me,

It’s not your loss, it’s all mine.

Because most my friends had 3 or 4

Who told them off,

then hugged them tight.

Who made them laugh,

with tales of plight.

And who loved their every flaw.

It’s a shame you were my only one,

Yet I was one of many.

Because I always found out how

When you went away

You took the others,

But never me,

Or my brothers,

And it’s bothering me now.

I have nothing to remind me,

‘Cept a picture I procured.

Because you never really knew me.

Photos that I sent

You never saw,

Never opened,

Were found in a drawer.

And so that’s my family.

It’s a shame you never loved me,

Because I’m worth it, don’t you know.

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Poetry

Nurl

 

In a land of cats,

Far, far away,

There stands the angophora tree,

Where the kobold flits

From leaf to leaf,

Salchows from branch to higher branch,

Whispering her ancient plea:

“Oh almighty Nurl, I ask of thee,

Show me the sphendrone of this tree!

For these tresses of mine,

So gold and fine,

Are alas, too wild and free!”

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A clowder of cats,

On this cold day,

Observed the King’s own jabberknowl,

‘Twas a sight to see,

The gunsel here,

Moved by our kobold’s earnest words,

He offers his Nurlish soul:

“Oh what kind of mana is this, pray,

That I see before me today?

The angophora there,

Holds a maiden fair,

For my Nurlish heart to slay!”

The mew of the cats,

Did not once stay,

The himbo’s now much heightened lust,

As their eyes first met,

Hers first, then his,

For a moment she thought it Him,

“A Nurl? Oh surely it must!”

“Oh sweet thing I implore you be,

Mine forever then you will see,

What a love I can give,

If you’d only live,

In the King’s castle with me!”

The eyes of the cats,

Fixed their wry gaze,

Trying to see her intentions

She looked at our chap,

Ozena filled nose,

Knew then this was doomed and did cry,

“A fico to your attentions!”

 

 

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Poetry

A Home is Something More…

A house is a home when somebody loves it.

So what is it, I wonder, when somebody hates it?

A hovel, a prison, a financial strain

With no sense of warmth and an aura of pain

That seeps into your bones, making every one ache,

Coils around your heart like a venomous snake.

Injecting its darkness to kill off the light,

Wrong choices are made when you used to make right.

But everyone suffers as you become rotten

And all happy memories conveniently forgotten

Sit now in the garage in boxes stacked high,

Neglected, unwanted but then, by and by,

The house that is home, the one that is new,

Feels suddenly lonely and awfully blue.

You stop and you look,

You espy a book.

The one, the only book on the shelf

Is sitting there, lonesome, all by itself.

Your eye wanders thoughtfully to not one box but three.

Then you look at the bookshelf and finally see.

It’s not all about buildings and auras and aches.

It has nothing to do with metaphorical snakes.

When you take a step back,

When you take in what you lack,

You see it as plain as the quizzical looks

That what makes a home is a shelf load of books.

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