Back on Boxing Day (strangely) I posted a murder poem called Lizzie. I wasn’t thinking about murder, Christmas was quite a pleasant affair.
I do enjoy reading my poems out but don’t think I could ever face a crowd doing it but I can mask it with the power of video (insert reverb and 1980’s sound effects here). I would like to create versions to go along with all my written work eventually. I don’t know what’s come over me getting all these videos done…..actually I do, I downloaded the free software VSDC for video editing. If I didn’t have such a terrible laptop I probably would have created a few more fancy videos but it likes to crash on me which means I’m sticking with simple.
My YouTube channel is here if you would like to go and take a look.
I have another video poem to share from my YouTube channel Swarms Me. It’s a tiny rhyming couplet.
Ahhh I’ve finally uploaded another video on YouTube after lots of fussing around. It’s unrefined but I like it anyway and I’m most happy about finally finding the right setting for writing videos. It’s to accompany this poem, Hares.
Beauty in brown.
A trickle of treacle
Warm chestnuts in cold hands
Toasted bread and bubbling cheese,
two rounds please.
Rough walnut shells and wet earth smells.
Coffee ground from beans
means time to sit down , feet up
book open and flick through the pages
Glossy conkers peeping up to me
through crunchy Autumn leaves.
Sparrows shouting from my roof.
The clopping hooves of a shaggy Shire,
Logs waiting for a fire
or a carving that makes a floor full of shavings,
or back to the start as a gnarled oak tree
with acorn cups for a fairy or three.
To scribble with ink of many shades
but always back to brown on a thick cream page.
© Swarms Me 2017
My immortal eyes,
across pastures glide
Beyond the crow cloaked oak
and woodfire smoke.
To hear the small dryw cry
For the White Hart’s rise.
Swarms Me ©2016
In March of 2016 we went on a short trip to Llandygwydd, Cardiganshire, Wales where we met local artist, David Beattie. You can see his works on his Facebook page here. David kindly opened up his studio to let us have a look round. It was a veritable cornucopia for the eyes and mind, every available surface was covered in his work and works in progress. He was very welcoming and happy to talk about his work, processes and research, he has a true artist’s character.
He was, at that time working on a number of pieces for his university portfolio and hares feature very strongly in his work. So the combination of this, the surroundings and long walks and the natural inspiration of Wales led to this poem.
Tomorrow we’re going wassailing. I’m very excited, it is something I’ve wanted to do for ages to brighten up this otherwise grey and miserable time of year.
For anyone who doesn’t know wassailing is most likely Anglo-Saxon in origin and you’ll find it happening in fruit growing areas around early to mid-January, depending on what calendar you are following. The point is to make sure the coming year’s harvest is a good and fruitful one. The wassail queen places cider soaked bread on to branches of a chosen tree and everyone sings, cider is also poured on the roots. Then everyone goes round all the trees banging and shouting to wake the trees up and chase off any evil spirits that lurk and would otherwise do harm to the trees. Exciting eh!?
Well with this coming up and me having a right old ponder this morning about getting some YouTube videos sorted out and I thought about doing a haiku a day. As the day goes on my brain ticks and whirrs…I shouldn’t pay it any attention half the time. Anyway I ended up with what will come in a moment. I feel like I’m jabbering and would normally like to keep my posts a bit shorter than this. It’s no a proper haiku, the only elements are the syllables and it is seriously lacking in sabi and wabi. I’ve kind of merged it with an old English folk song style due to the subject matter…I’ll shut up now, meditate on succinctness and you can actually read it.
Shout and bang and sing
with the wassail queen and king.
Ripe hopes, this year bring.
© Swarms Me 2017
The bad, the ugly and the good
I would remember you however I could.
A smudge for a face,
my mind’s misjudged, short-sighted at night,
even in grieving daydreams
the dappled light shadows your features to me.
And your voice that I think I can recall
sounds shrill and will not reach that lilting timbre
that made me safe
That made me warm.
We sit and talk in a mundane scene.
No award winning shots that capture our dream.
I know I am, but I keep it going
Don’t focus too much
or my brain will wake me,
out of this empty longing reverie.
Let’s just slide back in, butter dripping
down our fingers, eating chip sandwiches
at the kitchen table with a cup of tea
and the dog on your knee trying to catch scraps.
Then my mind switches to a stupid row
when I dug in my heels.
The hurt in your eyes. I cried that night.
Why does my brain punish me?
I know what’s coming next.
My lids are closed but I still see
you there, not there, don’t leave me
© Swarms Me 2017