Thursday, 27 February 2020

A walled garden offering shelter

A walled garden offering shelter
But this time is not my time
Today is not my day of days
I need to arrange a more private visit

The flowers are awash
With every living colour
The pond is full-on black
As if filled with Pelikan Indian Ink

But this time is not my time
Today is not my day of days
So I shall make a singular visit
Or view my thousand photographs

It is true I came here not knowing
Uncertain of what I might find
In that way then the joy
Counteracts the disappointment

Yet to use that word
Is way less than fair
For the sun it was shining
And a shelter was already there

Though not for me this summer house
And not for many a day I fear
For the wall within a wall
Is one wall too many today my dear

My mind asks too many questions
I cannot find a place to sit
The construct holds too many suggestions
I cannot be at one with it

This was not my day of days
It was not the time to be my time one bit
I ought to consider a rearrangement
When body, mind, and soul are more fully fit

Wednesday, 26 February 2020

The breeze and the book are my shelter

The breeze and the book are my shelter
I may even ask them to join me in the garden
Although the breeze may already be there

The book is Derek Jarman’s Modern Nature
A title gifted to him by Maggi Hambling
It is based around his cottage at Dungeness

My shelter though is creaking
For I am being asked
To undertake household chores
Which I never imagined would happen

I don’t know that I ever
Read one book properly
Not in any way that I now remember

I say this as I search for Lotus Leaves
By Thich Nhat Hahn
Whose name I never could spell either

There is a tiredness in my mind
My favourite picture is in shadow
I have completed another book of words

All over the bookshelves there are memories
Waiting for the breeze
To blow their titles into the gardens

What if I never find
The meditation teacher’s handbook
Or don’t ever shake myself
Free of this malaise

I have many pencils with pencil marks to make
Yet I have so few words to say
Not which could be strung together

To make anything worthwhile
Other than the jingles
Of the breeze and the book shelter

Tuesday, 25 February 2020

Today’s shelter is the one being

Today’s shelter is the one being
The one being in the one body
Not disturbing oneself unduly
Nor creating disturbance to anyone other

This is the shelter of the one and only
Not a lonely one
Nor one standing entirely alone
But when all is said and done still the only one

This is the shelter of the here and now
Not the only place to be
But a good place
To be in for the moment

With tea to drink
With biscuits to savour
With words to write
With air to breathe

Today is a day of rain and thunder
Also of blue skies and sunshine
This then is the shelter
Of the one thing then the other

Where moods darken
Where spirits become lighter
Where the true prospect of shelter
Brings a smile to the face

Sat on this comfortable settee
In this quiet and peaceful room
Where the pictures and the photographs
Are familiar to heart and mind and soul

This dream shelter is the shelter of being
Where I may be
Where you may be
At ease within the joy of being

Monday, 24 February 2020

I am listening to the cricket

I am listening to the cricket
The World Cup is on BBC Radio
It is one of my shelters
For this ever improving summer

Today’s game has turned
Into a dead rubber
A phrase I rather care for
As it sort of goes with the flow

I look out of the windows
To watch the breeze
Bring a sway
To the tops of trees and hedges

This then is what I call being steady
Not ready to do anything
Other than to sit and stare
Without a thought or care

There goes another wicket
Accompanied by dancing in the aisles
I am reminded that is why England
Needed to win their last two games

They say that cricket is a bit more civilised
Well why wouldn’t it be, as it is played
During continuously improving summers
On manicured squares of grass so green

Sunday, 23 February 2020

To the one side is the builder

To the one side is the builder
To the other the gardener mows the grass
From the concrete mixer to the trowel
To the beads of sweat upon the brow

He talks of white painted walls and fences
She buys more plants for the planting tubs
The garden pond is still leaking
A penetration to the sunken membrane

The studio could have a window
If only he had the necessary skills
The far garden could have a building
But how many places are needed to sit or write

All in all we are all on a search for shelter
Both for the creation and for the living
So a garden becomes a place for dreaming
For leaning on our own adventures

One by one the list is encouraged
Day by day another idea or ideas
Never then to truly settle
Not ever to become set solidly still

Instead a canvas for fabrication
An easel to describe the wheelbarrows
Of toil, trouble and dissatisfaction
Before the lights are allowed to shine

Not ever then to say never
Or to think the fence would be good in grey
Always to find a shelter for the sitting
As one wanders through night and day