Autumn Layers

Autumn Layers

How far into the Autumn dare we edge
Without a proper coat ?
Using jackets and jumpers as a bridge
To keep our hopes afloat –
Pretending the Summer is lurking still
Whenever the morning’s bright,
But getting caught by an unexpected chill
That serves us right.
And yet, if we keep moving about
On the sunny side of the street,
It’s almost warm enough for going out
In the dying heat.
So please, just one more week before we don
Our bulky Winter coats,
When the pre-frost says that the Summer’s gone,
And the tardy North Wind gloats.

Lift thou Up thy Rod

salisbury cathedral withstands the wrath of god

Lift thou Up thy Rod

Just as a church is crowned by a spire,
And just as the spire is crowned by a cross,
So the cross is crowned by a stiffened wire
That points heavenwards and reaches higher,
Showing God that science is boss.
From king to serf to country squire,
Nobody’s prayers and nobody’s choir,
To God or Thor or Helios,
Can stop the bolt of electric fire –
Not any pope or priest or friar
Can tame the spark and spare the loss
Like copper can.  And that is why
There’s a spike that jabs the eye of the sky,
With a finger raised to the holy man on high.

Sparkle in the Rain

for once, impressionism's lack of detail pay off
A Rainy Day in Paris by Ulpiano Checa


Sparkle in the Rain

The very first drops and we’re under attack,
The sun is in hiding, the sky is in black,
We pull on our coat and we button our mac,
And we rush to get out of the rain.

Sheltered in doorways and clustered by trees,
We’re watching the drops as they dance in the breeze,
And cursing the spray and the drizzle and freeze,
As we long to get out of the rain.

Some make a dash, be they brave or naive,
Breaking from cover when showers reprieve –
Darting from shelter to harbour they weave
As they run to get out of the rain.

Some, with umbrellas, just pleasantly stroll,
Dry and protected with weather control,
But puddles and splashes may yet take their toll,
And so teach to get out of the rain.

The streets have all emptied, the crowds have gone home
The bird have all vanished, the bees seek the comb,
The colours are muted, the world monochrome
As the world must get out of the rain.

The gutters are flooding, and eaves getting drowned,
The kerbs are a torrent, the drains are unbound,
The fountains are pointless, and springs are uncrowned,
As they wait to get out of the rain.

But beauty is here, of a different strain,
For not ev’ry downpour’s a twelve-hurricane,
Why, just ask the ducks why they choose to remain,
And never get out of the rain.



Work is my Sunscreen

i don't know what dilbert's complaining about

Work is my Sunscreen

All Summer long
I’m working in a basement,
A windowless basement
All the Summer long.

It may seem so wrong
To not have a casement
To open in my basement,
When heatwaves prolong.

But free from the throng,
I’m happy with effacement
In my quiet basement,
Where I get along.

When the Sun beats strong,
I’m glad he’s kept adjacent
And out of my basement
Where he don’t belong.

Even Mao Zedong
Would leave me in my placement,
Would leave me in my basement
All my workday long.

Then home at evensong,
Still cool from how my day’s spent
In an air-conditioned basement,
All the Summer long.


brown concrete mid rise buildings
Photo by Mohammed Ajwad on



The clouds refuse to play their part,
The air is wet but isn’t draining –
Lazy rain that will not start,
A rainy day without the raining.

The mercury, though getting low,
Has further yet to drop,
And windscreen wipers do not know
If they should go or stop.

Our coats are misted, but are dry,
The downpour still delays its visit.
Palms are upturned to the sky –
It’s not yet worth a brolly, is it ?

The moisture cannot tap its power,
But glowers ‘coming soon’ –
We’re thirty seconds from a shower
All the afternoon.



Storm Warning

The Gathering Storm by John Robinson


Storm Warning

The temp’rature is stalling,
And the air is tinged with tin,
The mercury is falling,
And the front is moving in.
The cumulus is clumping,
And the sun is shafting gold,
The Ninety-Nines are slumping,
And the mugginess turns cold.

The temp’rature is dropping,
And the singing birds are stopping,
And the ringing ears are popping,
And the air is tinged with tin.
The woodpecker is calling,
And weathercock is squalling,
And the mercury is falling,
And the front is moving in.

The chimneypots are whistling,
And the flies have stopped their buzz,
The static cling is bristling,
And the cats are balls of fuzz.
The thunderheads are stacking,
And the grey is turning black,
The sun is wholly lacking,
And the thunder starts to crack.

The temp’rature’s adjusting,
And the herald-winds are gusting,
And the anvil-tops are thrusting,
And the air is tinged with tin.
The heavy drops are splashing,
And the lightning-bolts are flashing,
And the mercury is crashing,
And the front is moving in.



Sashes & Splashes



Sashes & Splashes

I love to hear the raindrops from the dry-side of the window,
As they pitter-patter on the misty glass, kept well at bay –
The panes become my armour from the showers and the wind,
So I can watch the running rivulets, a quarter-inch away.



Gods’ Breath

wind god


Gods’ Breath

Cry out your name to the wind,
As it gathers and flies,
Let it carry your name on its wing
To the edge of the skies.
Cry out your name to the wind,
And the wind replies –
“I am Aneurin, I am Belinda,
The unseen and wise.
Now I am Cormac, blowing, blowing,
Davina rising, Ezra free –
Soon to be Fortune, waiting, growing –
Filling the sails at mill and sea.
I am the storm and the maelstrom twinned,
The harbinger-bringer, the hurricane eyes !”

So cry out your name to the wind,
And your name shall rise.



Season’s Fleetings

snowdrop christmas card

Season’s Fleetings

How can the Midwinter feast be here,
So far from the middle of Winter,
When Autumn’s leaves are barely down,
And frost has yet to hit the town ?
How can the shortest day be near
So far from the chill of Winter ?
We feast on pudding by the wedge
Before we’ve eaten up our veg.
But wait…the snowdrops soon appear
In what was once still Winter –
If Advent sees the last of Fall,
Then Burns Night sees the Springtime call.
The thaw before the freeze each year
Will warm and squeeze the Winter –
We’ve brandy butter on our snouts
Before we’ve eaten up our sprouts.

Nicholmas Daisies

focus photography of purple daisy flowers
Photo by Beata Kamińska on


Nicholmas Daisies

They seem to be lasting for longer each year,
So long past September and into December –
For even in frost and in sleet, they appear –
Still shining in bloom on the thermal frontier.

And I have seen violets outlast their season,
And snowdrops and hellebores turning up early doors.
I wonder if climate change offers a reason ?,
For something is urging these flowers and trees on.

The branches are bare, but the apples still mellow –
We’ve bred them so hardy, it just makes them tardy.
Surprises of colour make strange bedding-fellows,
With the roses still red as the crocus bursts yellow.