Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Safe and sound

On a beach
Lazing around
A warming breeze
I'm safe and sound

Gentle waves
Shells galore
Palm tree shade
I fear no more

This is my
Safety room
In my mind
Safe from doom

(Today I took
My Rachel there
Lots of fun
Without a care)


Mama Zen at Real Toads challenged us to write about our safe place in 53 words or less.   This was the safe place I used for my childbirth meditations.  It's the safe place I go when depression is overwhelming.  And it's a real life safe place where Rachel and I went today.

Monday, 27 May 2013

Ode to an ovary

Dear left ovary
Why do you always hide?
Don't you hear your calling?
You're not here for the ride.

You have a task to do
Did no one ever tell?
You hold the key to life
You're not an empty shell

Don't tell me that you're done
And you're wanting to retire
You only work six times a year
Buck up, you can't be tired


Poem inspired by the art posted at The Mag entitled "Pony tail" by last exit.  It obviously isn't actually a photo of an ovary but it looked like one when I first saw it.

Depression versus Poems

Inspiration - gone
Creativity - missing
No words
No rhymes
Brick wall I am hitting

Is this how it goes
When mood is stabilised?
Don't like
Not right
Productivity vaporised

Everything is calm
Depression now lifted
No anxiety
Lots of life in me
But where is my poetry?


You might have noticed that I'm barely writing poetry, or anything much at all.  It's not lack of time or lack of subject matter, I just can't seem to get poems to work at the moment.   I'm pretty sure it's my mood stabilisers which address sapping my creative edge, but they work on stopping my depression.

So I'm left with this debate:
Creativity or depression?

Which would you choose?
Have you had any experience of this?
Might it change with time?

I miss my poems.

Thursday, 23 May 2013

Reasons to be cheerful

The sky is dull and grey
It's going to rain for hours
But at least the plants can grow
Cheering me with their flowers

The car keeps costing me money
Nothing's every cheap
But at least I can afford it
It doesn't keep me from sleep

I'm more a taxi than a mum
Taking her wherever she needs
But at least I can be a mum
For which I'll be forever pleased

My carpet needs a clean
And everything needs a polish
But at least I have a house
We don't live on heaps of rubbish

I have middle class problems
They're nothing in the scheme of things
I'm thankful for all I have
I will celebrate and sing


Linked up at Reasons To Be Cheerful at Mummy From The Heart.   And look, being cheerful has brought out the sun.

Wednesday, 22 May 2013

The tree of life (2011)

Life in grace

Life gives and life it takes away
That is the law of nature
Yet throughout, God touches all
His grace the source of pleasure

When life is good, we celebrate
Laugh and play and sing
But sometimes calamity occurs
We know not what it brings

In our loss, we contemplate
The meaning of it all
Why He builds us up so high
Yet allows us then to fall

We can not stay still where we are
We must journey beyond
Through all sorrow and all strife
God will lead us on

Fix your eyes on love alone
Abandon earthly cares
One day they will all be long gone
And heaven with God we'll share



Life Given
Life Taken
God sustains

Life's joy

Life's pain

Life's meaning
God leads us
To love




Cosmic reactions
Race to fill voids with
Explosions of joy

Matter meets
Atoms collide with
Eternal energy

Bodies form
Beings hold tight
Perfection created

Chance allowed
Life tended
Plans enacted

Love reflected
Develops purpose
Grace outpours


The End

A beach

A hand

A destination

An eternity


Today I finally got around to watching the winner of the 2011 Cannes Film Festival Palme D'Or award "The tree of life".  I expected it to be different and I'd read about its philosophical resonances and poetic themes so wasn't shocked by the film as some might be.  In fact I was transported by the film and it's got me thinking and writing.  These poems emerged as reflections of the film and it's meaning.

pyjamas and sandals

pyjamas and sandals
every girl needs

Saturday, 18 May 2013

Come holy spirit come

Grace at Real Toads challenged us to write a poem in the form of a Rictameter.   Since tomorrow is the festival of Pentecost it seemed right to write about the work of the holy spirit then and now.

Came down to Earth
Riding on wind's breath
Tongues as of fire without heat
Touching all those gathered there together
Resting, giving, filling, teaching
Tools of proclamation
For all of time

Invited now
Move among us today
As all those centuries ago
Be alive in our world, empowering
Give us the words we need to say
Actions that we must take
Come spirit come

Friday, 17 May 2013

We found a birds egg

Birds egg
One careful owner
Half price


Rachel doesn't appreciate this haiku.  Mike however days this is his sort of poem.   I wonder what haiku heights thinks.

Diet dilemma

I'm on a diet
Have been for a month
Trying to get my head in the game
Put less in my mouth to munch

I'm losing pretty well
But I've a dilemma I must face
Is loading quickly the way to go
Or should I choose a slower pace?

I'm very Black and White you know
Not prone to middle ground
But I have to take it steady
If I'm too lose my (tummy) round

You might not believe it's possible
But even girls as big as me
Can suffer anorexia
Can't let it get hold of me

So I'm committing to a healthy plan
Eating calories calculated carefully
Lots of fruit, veg and meat
Will in time produce a smaller me

Sunday, 12 May 2013

My daughter I'll mother

No manual
No guide
Nowhere to go hide

No training
No mentor
Never done this before

And other emotions

All encompassing
More than anything

My daughter
I'll mother
Today and forever


I'm not sure this is quite right, but it's a good first draft and it says what I want to get across.  Linked up at Poets United.

For the love of a mum @childrensociety

There was a young girl,
We'll call her Kat.
She had a small child,
They lived in a flat.
She wanted to stand,
On her own two young feet.
But everyone assumed,
She was a benefit cheat.

This mother called Kat,
Knew what people said.
She tried not to care,
But she cried in her bed.
If they'd cared to look,
They'd have seen sacrifice
Kat went without food
To help her child thrive.

One day it came time,
For her child to start school.
Kat saved for the uniform,
So kids wouldn't be cruel.
On the first day,
They walked in together.
She prayed that her child,
Would be ambitious and clever.

Kat didn't want,
Her child to grow.
Without any prospects,
With nothing to show.
What she doesn't realise,
Which I want her to know.
Is that she's ALL that her child needs,
Because she loves that child so.


Inspired by the very real situation faced by many young mums.  Please don't judge anyone without knowing the full story, some of the best mums I know have nothing to offer except love, and that's more than enough.  For more information about child poverty in the UK and how you can help please visit the children's society.

Written loosely in the style of:
There was an old woman who lived in a shoe.
She had so many children, she didn't know what to do;
She gave them some broth without any bread;
Then whipped them all soundly and put them to bed.

Linked up at Poets United.

Spring Haiku Series

nature's colour palette
blue hues

Blue beads
Mirror spring showers

invading lawn

insect paradise

hold under chin
do you like butter?
magic cup

Ready for take off

promise of blue
awaiting perfect weather
six weeks late

Apple blossom
Like our dreams

tiny buds
attracting insects

stalking wasps
catching too many
foolish kitten

Woven together

Thursday, 9 May 2013

The days prelude

Awoke early
Bleary eyed, confused
Birds singing spring celebrations
Leaves rustling, nature's percussion
Head heavy with dreams unfinished
Emotions raging
Now ebbing

"Sleep well?"
I'm not sure
"Busy day?
What's in store?"

Alarm clocks ringing
Children stirring
Day beginning
What ending?


Kerry at real toads challenged us to write a prelude poem.  I couldn't even begin to figure out how but put fingers to keyboard and this emerged.

Sunday, 5 May 2013

Surviving in the dark

For seven months I've been
Surviving in the dark
Every day a struggle
No light, no joy, no spark

Not wanting to get up
Not caring about much at all
Wishing it could be over
But trying hard not to fall

Celebrating small wins
Like getting out of bed
Fighting for perspective
Inside my heavy head

Searching for solutions
Trying anything I could
Battling the frustration
Of being misunderstood

Through all those endless weeks
I've never felt alone
God's been right beside me
His love I've always known

I can only imagine
How hard it would have been
Without support of church
And all the love within

Millions of people
Know this darkness in their lives
Don't know where to turn to
As their trying to survive

It's time to make a difference
To talk about the pain
To break taboos around it
Eradicate the shame

Depression is an illness
Sufferers are not strange
You can help so many
By supporting Time to Change


I've been trying to write a poem about my depression for weeks, to express how it's felt and to raise awareness. It's no surprise that it's taken until now, when I'm finally feeling better, to see it come together.

It's been the most horrendous seven months, the absolute darkest of my life, which you will have probably seen in my poetry. 

And yet I've learned so much;
- about family and friendship and the importance of support
- about God, church and ministry and what I'm called to do
- about psychiatric services and their many pitfalls
- about poetry and its ability to heal
- about myself

Time to change is an amazing charity which works to challenge stigma about mental health.  It can happen to anyone, no one is immune.