Rainbow Colours – Haiku

Rainbow Haiku.

Red.

The colour of blood

Dressing for power? – Wear red

Midsummer  – poppies.

Orange.

Colour of sunrise.

A fruit grown in Spain’s sun

Carnival colour.

Yellow.

Bright dandelions

Pretty golden buttercups

Colour of Lemons.

Green.

Forty-nine shades

Trees, grass, leafy vegetables

A Christmas colour.

Blue.

Baby and sky blue

Flowers too, bluebells, blue iris

Sometimes, blue moods.

Indigo.

Deep, dark and so rich

Colour of uniforms, Jeans

Thundery skies.

Violet.

A flower colour

Of heather, and dainty violets

Shrinking violets – shy.

 

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Green Man.

I have had an interest in finding out about the Green Man, did a bit of ‘googling’ and found this poem by Mike Harding. While the Green Man is mostly about the head and face carved in wood,  there is a Wild Man, who is represented as a whole man, similarly, he is carved out of wood.

Mike Harding was well known as a Singer/songwriter and comedian in the 1960’s you can see his work on Utube. As you can see he writes a good poem too. He has several published books, which he illustrates with his own photographs: The Little Book of the Green Men.    Footloose in the Himalaya.

The Green Man.       By Mike Harding.

I am the face in the leaves,

I am the laughter in the forest,

I am the King in the wood,

I am the blade of grass

that thrusts through the stone cold clay

at the dark of winter.

I am before and I am after,

I am always and the end

I am the face in the forest,

I am the laughter in the leaves.

 

Autumn is here!!

Walk in Autumn Woods.

Walking in the woods in autumn, on a bright evening. We are going on a circular route. In the rapidly dimming light, we miss our turning and lose our way. We found ourselves at the edge of the wood, beside a small country road. We decided not to leave the aroma of the woods, with the trees and flowers scents mingling. We decided to retrace our steps. The darkness brought a coolness; we pulled our clothes closer. We moved towards each other enjoying the warmth of the other one’s body. A small hand grasped mine, I curled my hand around hers and thought how small it was, tiny bones like birds. We matched our steps and quickened our pace.

The gentle evening breeze was turning into a lively one. The leaves were fluttering, displaying the pale undersides. The leaves shed by the Whitebeam and Alder, rustled under our feet. We hear a Wren chirrup in alarm and flutters off into the safety of the higher darkness.

The distant trees start to become into dark and ghostly shapes; branches seem to be reaching out to catch us. We pass the ‘leaning Crab Apple’ tree, where we played as children,  feeling relief as it signals we are halfway home. Our feet picked up speed, the dried mud crunching underneath. The light of the moon is reflecting in the wetter mud puddles.

Quicker still now, not seeing where we were placing our feet, we stumble over concealed tree roots and over stones and pebbles. The noise from our feet and our heavy breathing frightens and distresses the unseen animals, who crash away alarming to more. Suddenly the quiet of the woodland is alive to panicking animals. That we have given offence to the animals causes us to ‘pull ourselves in’ minimising our bulk trying to be invisible in the night. We begin to jog as we see the wood edge emerging.

We collapse, breathless over the field gate. In front of us are the lights of home. Grey wood smoke swirls from the chimney pots. The distant sound of laughter and chatter drifting on the air as people leave the Red Lion. Well known sounds make us relax our breathing. Normality is returning to our lives, a feeling of reluctance to take ourselves back indoors sweeps over us. During this walk, we have experienced being part of the woods and Nature’s world.

 Based on the poem Walking in Autumn by Frances Horovitz, dedicated to Diana Lodge.

 

William Ernest Henley and Invictus.

Invictus is a poem which focuses on the human spirit and its ability to overcome adversity. It is a rallying cry to those who find themselves in dark and trying situations, who have to dig deep and fight for their lives. The poet certainly knew hard times and needed all his strength to battle against the disease.

Born in Gloucestershire, England in 1849, he was diagnosed with tubercular arthritis at the age of 12 and went through years of pain and discomfort. W. E. Henley wrote Invictus whilst in the hospital undergoing treatment for tuberculosis of the bones specifically those in his left leg, which had to be amputated from the knee down, he was still only a young man at this time.

He managed to save his right leg by refusing surgery and seeking an alternative form of treatment from a Scottish doctor, James Lister.

It was during his time in Edinburgh that Henley met the writer, Robert Louis Stevenson. They became friends and corresponded on a regular basis. Stevenson later admitted that he had based his character, Long John Silver – from the book Treasure Island – on Henley, he has a wooden leg, a strong rasping voice and forceful personality.

Invictus does contain passion and defiance and it is easy to see just why so many use the power lines to drum up courage and to shed light into the darker corners when all else fails. Written in 1875 and published in 1888. It retains its original power and conviction.

Henley’s personal experience on the operating table and in a hospital bed, facing possible death, certainly helped him create one of the most popular poems in the English language.

INVICTUS.       By William Ernest Henley.

Out of the night that covers me,

    Black as the pit from pole to pole,

I thank whatever gods may be

    For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance

    I have not winced or cried aloud,

Under the bludgeonings of chance

    My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears

    Looms but the Horror of the shade,

And yet the menace of the years

    Finds, and shall find me, unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,

    How charged with punishments the scroll,

I am the master of my fate,

    I am the captain of my soul.

 

Forever friends.

Girls’ Weekend Away.

Middle-aged, Kate and Jess, friends since Primary School were having an away weekend. These always included wine and pampering, wine and food, wine and fun. Whenever they met there was an eruption of excitement. They called themselves, ‘the sisters by another mother’. This time, staying in a vineyard would be extra fun.

First thing, they headed to the bar for a couple of glasses of Prosecco. Sitting in the sun filled balcony, the swimming pool beckoned. changing into bikinis and Ugg boots, unsuitably dressed for walking through vines to the pool

Splishing and splashing lingering, laughing and gossiping, exchanging news.

Unexpectedly, black clouds! Drops plopped in the pool. Wrapped in towels which flapped around their legs as they ran, the Ugg boots sticking in the muddy paths between the vines, made it hard work.

The two drowned rats arrived panting and laughing in Reception. The girl behind the desk told the porter to ‘Help then off with the boots’, ‘They are not going to walk through the Hotel in them!’ She added ‘You are in luck! Two people have cancelled Spa bookings, you two can take them if you like!’   ‘Ooo! Yes please’.

 

      

This is not my work but it is un-named.

‘Flash Poetry’ on the subject of Angels.

GUARDIAN ANGEL

Sleeping on the job?

When I was most in dire need

Just in time you woke

 

MY SCRUFFY GUARDIAN ANGEL

Dirty face, black eyes

Tattered wings and runny nose

You came up trumps all the same

 

MY GUARDIAN ANGEL- THANK YOU!

Worn wings, rusty sword

Playing cards with little devils?

You saved me in nick of time

 

MY SLAPDASH GUARDIAN ANGEL

On a sly fag break?

Eyes closed, feet up on a cloud?

All the same – you star

 

ANGEL

Blue-eyed Seraphim

Beautiful in silvered wings

Blonde halo of curls

 

ANGEL WARRIOR

Golden-eyed and strong

Shield raised sword held high prepared

Wings of hardened steel

 

WW1. The Army is Recruiting.

WW1. The Army is Recruiting.

In 1914, the Army was visiting

Villages, looking for strong young

Lads. Necessary, for the War Effort.

 

They had to be strong lads, with a

Certain height and chest measurement.

Selecting the Villages best.

 

Parents happily signed forms.

Their son was ‘Doing his bit.’

Excited sons, looking forward to going.

 

The day came, A Band arrived to lead

The teenage sons away from home.

Proud boys followed the band.

 

Trains took boys to camp,

For Basic Training. Officers taught

The boys to March and to ‘Know their place.’

 

Wearing new but ill-fitting Uniforms, nervous

New Recruits wondered what awaited

Across the English Channel in France.

 

‘It will be over by Christmas.’

Rang in their ears, anxious now,

Of thoughts of all left behind.

 

Landing in France, then marching,

Marching into the War Zones.

Bolstering up each other’s courage.

 

They cannot have imagined what

War was, or meant. The tree-less

Countryside, the Trenches and noise.

 

Going forward to Front Lines, to go

‘Over the top!’, their fears, the smell.

The knowledge that this day could be a last.

 

Death, destruction, demoralised and

Distressed boy soldiers remembered

Mum’s dinners and apple pie.

 

Unable to cope with the lack of comfort,

Some poor distraught boys ran away.

Not meaning to desert but getting out.

 

The sick and frightened children were

Captured, returned to base, tried and

Sentenced to be Shot at Dawn.

 

Officers chose their Pals or colleagues

To join the Firing Squads and pull the triggers.

The Order was given, Bang! A boy dies.

 

Of those boys left behind, hopes and spirits

Die too, never to rise again. This War, that

Begun as an adventure turned to destruction.

 

What did the once proud parents and

Villagers feel like when they were

Informed the Village boys were

Shot at Dawn,

For Cowardice or Desertion.