Tuesday, 13 November 2012

A link to a writer friend's blog where she writes about a worthy new publication. She's also responsible for the cover's fantastic artwork.

Just one word…

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Change Slips In

Autumnal change, unfixed, a slow, slumbering
breeze, soundless as a drying leaf wafting
from the past, like shifting sands, an ebbing tide,
shadows of a time gone by.

You have brought new colours to my table,
energies abound, their vibrant caress support
for darker days.

I lie on a cusp, arms open to
the richness of expectation, heart alive,
high above a dancing landscape, abstract,
flowing, waiting, like an actor in the wings,
confident, yet uncertain.

Whisper, sweet change, reveal your secrets
with ochre dulcet tones.
Wash me clean of yesterday and carry
me through a swift today to the ‘what if’
of tomorrow.

Imbue me with the hues of autumn’s canvas
so I can settle, unafraid, ready to meet
whatever comes my way.

Sun shines, rain falls, wind blows;
night comes with the promise of light.
Change slips in, as it should,
like a friend bearing gifts.

Tuesday, 25 September 2012

Here's a link to one of my crit-buddy's websites. Carol Ervin has recently released her first novel, The Girl on the Mountain, which I had the pleasure of critting. I have no problem recommending it to anyone interested in a fantastic read. http://carolervin.com/?blogsub=confirming#subscribe-blog

Thursday, 21 June 2012

The Longest Day

the longest of days
mirrored on the lake surface
solstice in my heart

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Warped Canvas

El Toro, grotesque beauty,
so easily erased to mollify fallacious bloodlust.
Francis Bacon, hedonistic impressionist,
painted good-looking men;
matadorial studies of male on male action
transferred to the sordid dousing of your innocent flame.

Ceremonial peacock, zoning on his prey,
curious, post-pubescent in his hip-thrusting ritual.
His tortured plaything, heaving, almost spent,
unaware of the impending onslaught strutting two feet away,
pausing, awaiting that sadistic nod from sweaty Mammon.

Nero, you never went away.

El Toro, blazing heart, they wait to see you
pierced with their slender, penile rapier.
Their special-bred boy.

What if you refuse? 
Deny them their theatre?
Turn their blood-smeared table over?

Be sure. 
Be thorough. 
Use that savage heart they would deflate of its burning glory.
Use your virgin impaler, your ivory phallus.
Let them balk to taste the untainted side of
Bacon’s warped canvas.

Destroy the sabre-clad man-child
and live to tell your tale.
El Toro, innocent beauty, live…
for us.

Tuesday, 1 May 2012

An Observation On The Day Of A Christening

Crow, on your bough,
cast your knowing eye
through my morning window.
White smoke rising in the valley
merges with the hungry cries
of babies with no choice.
Will sacred oils ease the pain
of life, or has the crow’s
shadow already decided where
Sligo’s early mist will
carry your message to the world? 

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Seriously, We’re Only Human

I’m a member of a writing group where I live. Though we’ve moved location a couple of times, and ‘jettisoned’ our, ahem…messianic leader along the way, we have managed to remain together for over two years, developing into a strong, friendly group of people who love to write.
You’ll probably notice that I didn’t describe us as a group of writers? Some in the group could be placed in that category, but most are simply lovely people who like to write creatively, especially at our weekly meeting where some really good material is produced.
We’re currently putting an anthology together, and have spent the last three months or so reading and critiquing each other’s work, always endeavouring to make the process as collaborative as possible.
On the most part it’s been a positive experience, with most of the group taking an active part in the project. Many of them would have had little or no critiquing experience so it was great to see them grasping what can sometimes be an awkward nettle. As in any group, much of the work falls on the backs of a small number of people who maybe have more experience or aptitude, but this is okay once the rest are willing to tie in and support the open process.
It’s so important in these collaborative projects that everyone understands that opinions are just that - not personal, or de-facto – and that we’re all on the same side, looking to bring everyone’s work to the best place it can possibly be before going to press.
Thing is, when you’re close and friendly with members of a group, and when you know how passionate they may feel about their writing – even though they may just be enthusiasts - how honest are you willing to be when critiquing their work? I mean, in the ‘real’ world of writing and commercial publishing, friendship has to go out the door if there’s to be any chance of work being accepted. But in a writing group, where everyone knows each other nearly as well as can be, would you be willing to go the ‘whole hog’ when critting that friend’s pieces? I mean, we are only human after all, so it’s understandable that you might hold back a little, or a lot, on revealing the truth about the piece, especially if they’re the sensitive type.
This is where I found myself. Now I’m usually straight as a dye, but sometimes - rarely - I find myself pulling back a little where I feel my opinions might offend someone who I know to be a sensitive soul, who loves what they write, but whose standard might not reach the level they perceive themselves to be at. So basically, what I’m saying is, I felt I couldn’t crit to my satisfaction for fear of breaking someone’s heart.
This was a big problem for me, and more so for us as a group, particularly where the quality of our anthology was concerned. If we weren’t being completely honest with each other, then what’s the point of putting the book out in the first place? I for one wouldn’t be able to stand behind it. To be honest, I’m not sure I’d want my work in it. So, lonnnngggg story cut just a tiny bit shorter, we’ve decided to commission an independent editor. While the vast majority of our work has been brought as far as we can bring it, there’s no doubting the benefits an established, and respected, writer/editor will bring, not just to our work, but to how the book is perceived by the public. It’s not a profit-making venture, but extra kudos never does any harm, and…and, apart from our more sensitive friends in the group seeing reality for what it is, I’ll also receive a real outsider’s view of my work. Groovy. Hope I’m able for it.

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Which Way Will I Go?

Stepping stones across the river of my life, most treacherous underfoot with slime of seasons past. I stand alone, surrounded by the current of my thoughts, wondering, feet wet, if the gap ahead will prove a step too far, if she will take me to the swirling depths of life’s unknowns.

I’ve come this far, crossed many thresholds, ploughed furrows through the muck of time, yet now I find I’m trapped, afraid to take the plunge.

I answer to myself. Decisions must be mine alone. Do I move or do I stay? Am I content, at peace with the rock I’m on? Have I left enough to make a mark, to leave a space that will be noticed?

Scars, deep scraped in walls of souls, litter the landscape of past. I’ve weathered storms created by commitment’s fear, lingered longer than invited, jumped and fled before bursting dams took away my power of choice.

But now I stand alone, connected by tendrils borne of duty, debt, and memory. The river of my life flows past, its latent, glaring strength a timely threat, a warning not to dwell, procrastinate, deny, or try to cross reality’s breadth, expanse, because she’s watching all the time, waiting, hoping, ready, to take me.

Which way will I go?

Tuesday, 28 February 2012


It came to me, like light
from the strongest star,
a realisation, awakening,
when I knew without fear
that we were bound together,
destined to share the shadows,
endure each other’s pain,
breathe one mutual breath.

There can be no kiss now without
escape, where heart is lifted
far beyond denial, where soul’s
release from past creates rebirth
through love and heartfelt joy.

You are my calm, my sanctuary,
where I have moored life’s craft,
now free of darkest nights of
war, long conflict of the mind,
of guilt at paths once taken
beneath the flag of pride.

Whatever time is left to us,
late summer, autumn, or the
starkness of a final winter,
we will survive through all each
trial may bring.

Strength, love, respect and understanding,
pillars to the palace of our hearts.
The stars will light our path and
we will find our way, as one.