Archives for posts with tag: sky
tilted galaxy

This image of a tilted galaxy appears courtesy of http://www.sciencekids.co.nz/pictures/space/tiltedspiralgalaxy.html

For World Space Week last October I wrote “On the declaration of the first day of the Year of Our Light.”

There are some wonderful lines in this poem, such as

“The swirling spheres in proclamation”,
“Light of more silver bright”
and the bit quoted for the headline, “The whole kerfuffle woke the stars.”

Sometimes I just like poetry for the way it allows words to sound.

For more about my fascination with words, see
Nice Words #1
Nice Words #2
Nice Words #4
Nice words of the moment (from autumn)
Cast them together

Twitter: @BeadedQuill
Facebook: BeadedQuill
Books:
In the Ocean: a year of poetry
Emily’s Poems for Modern Boys
Shining in Brightness: Selected Poems, 1999 – 2012

Northern (Hen) Harrier.jpg
Northern (Hen) Harrier” by Len Blumin from Mill Valley, California, United States – Northern Harrier. Licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons.

a poem written in London on Sept. 26th, 2014

Sky’s signal stopped September 10th.
Three days later, Hope’s did too.
Birds of their kind hunt small mammals.
Birds of their kind are near extinction.
This plight of the birds sparked action
and the hatchlings all were tagged.
Now Sky and Hope have vanished
there’s a reward for word.

In bed after my radio-alarm clock goes off, I listen to an early morning news bulletin. Half-asleep, half-awake is a strange state in which to have the bad, ugly and feel-good filter into one’s mind. In this doze I have half-heard, half-imagined many strange things about the world’s antics. The juxtaposition of the news items can in itself be uncanny, as was the case yesterday. The opening story was the impending Westminster vote about whether or not ‘to go to war’. Later in the bulletin was the item about two rare birds of prey that have disappeared.

I take in a breath when I see magnificent birds of prey in the air. Condors, eagles and falcons soar with a self-assurance that inspires awe. I don’t think I’ve seen hen harriers; they’re found further North of London. Yet the image of sharp-winged birds of prey cut down, whether by game shooters of misfortune, struck me. (Hen harriers are on the brink of extinction due to their unsuccessful breeding rate.)

With the names ‘Sky’ and ‘Hope’, a poet couldn’t have asked for better ready-made symbolic material.

The Westminster vote, the first item of the bulletin, is scheduled to happen today (Friday, 26th Sept.). I have omitted this last line from the poem, “In cabinet they vote on war.”

The line felt too obvious. I hope the smart reader is able to join some literary dots.

Twitter: @BeadedQuill
Facebook: BeadedQuill
Books:
In the Ocean: a year of poetry
Emily’s Poems for Modern Boys
Shining in Brightness: Selected Poems, 1999 – 2012

An Artist Works” was inspired by Constable’s cloud study dated ‘evening, 31 August 1822’. The English painter produced these close observations of the skies during 1821 and 1822 in Hampstead, North London where he spent his summers in the early 1820s.

This reproduction of one of Constable’s cloud studies was sourced via this lmc.gatech.edu link. (I shall gladly remove, if required. Please simply contact me.)

Caspar David Friedrich, "Wanderer above the Sea of Fog" (1818). 94.8 × 74.8 cm, Kunsthalle Hamburg.

Caspar David Friedrich, “Wanderer above the Sea of Fog” (1818). 94.8 × 74.8 cm, Kunsthalle Hamburg.

I often write to capture moments that I have experienced in solitude. Consider for example the afternoon that produced this poem, “On a rock amongst rocks. I had walked out beyond the beach of white sand to the rocky inlet beyond the seafront houses, the fishermen and the dog owners. Each day I used this landmark as the half-way point measure of each afternoon’s walk. That day I climbed onto the rocks.

These rocks are the jagged kind. If you walk across them barefoot, a delicate tread will still not circumvent the occasional stab to your sole. The sky was grey. Into the tide-carved chasms between the rocks dashed the waves. As the wave foam tossed against the jagged rocks, a further alchemy transpired. I would not have noticed the elemental magic had I not stood on that spot in stillness.

As the sea spray dispersed, it caught the light. On the rocks, bordered by the sea, encased in this salty mist, I stood within an orbit of tiny rainbows.

 

 
Rain slaps against the windowpane.
Wee! Wee! It jests and jeers. 
Look at our ease of water-dash
and drip and fall
while you – Haha! –
neith’ eight nor sixteen lines have wrought
on that page. It’s all for nought,
despite your ink-filled fountain pen.

Yes, I see
the sky makes way its blue for grey
              carriers of short-lived sport. The assent
shows far more grace than any 
of those regiments of pressed attention 

marching in my head. Daily it is
to their silver – buttons, medals, lining;
to their praise, rigour and filing, 
my polishing by draft’s employed.


As @BeadedQuill, I tweet regularly about writing and the creative life, but infrequently about English rain.
BeadedQuill also has a Facebook page. Please visit and give us a ‘Like’.

In 2013, I compiled two books of collected poetry online. Click on the titles below:

Emily’s Poems for Modern Boys bundles together twenty poems offering insightson life, love and work for the Modern Boy.

In addition to presenting poetry written by BeadedQuill from 1999 to 2012, Shining in Brightness includes two essays on creative process.

Yonder far o’er vale and glen
whereto grooms return
and bread is leaven.
This is another country.

Today, outside, is a new room
in which five builders,
tiered upon scaffolding,
cannot hear All Blues.

This is no time 
for saxophone wails.
Stand at the window
and look out

on the fresh planks.
The backdrop:
bared trees and
blue-skied bright.


All Blues” is a track from the Miles Davis album Kind of Blue (1959).

The books, available for preview:
Emily’s Poems for Modern Boys 
Shining in Brightness

Twitter: @BeadedQuill
Facebook: BeadedQuill

Grass grows to an unruly height.

It makes the lawn untidy.

Restore order, with its low rumble.

First it breaks a Saturday lie-in.

It leaves clippings to be swept up.

Give it a few weeks,

once more green blades will jiggle

their blue, sun applause.

Over a year ago I was asked for my advice on something. The question posed was, “Is it worth it?” At the time I wrote a poem about walking up a hill and eating prawns, but those four lines are lost amongst my usually well filed, carefully dated papers.  I’ve pondered the question occasionally since and recently find it much on my mind. Here then is a freshly cut poem on the theme.

Preview more of my poems in Shining in Brightness, my first book.

You can also add Shining in Brightness as a book on your Facebook profile. Please do so!

My second book, Emily’s Poems for Modern Boys, has received preliminary readings from a few discerning modern boys and some modern girls. Their commentary appears favourable. One reader notes of the poems, “I liked the ones I read.” Another notes, “Emily is kind. Emily is patient… Emily asks for us to pay attention for a short while.” This second volume is due out by the end of this month.

I also tweet as @BeadedQuill. I’d be delighted if you would follow me.