FIRST DATE

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(A poem about our first boat trip together)

My first boat trip

Will I like it?

Never sailed before in my life!

Going through locks must be hard work

Will it be worth the strife?

The sun is shining

It could be good

The trees creating shade.

I think I may enjoy this hobby –

Oh heck! It’s going to rain!

Moor the boat!

Pull up the canopy!

This isn’t a good start!

Rain now dripping from my nose

I doubt I look the part!

Oh well, wet now!

I bet he’s changed his mind.

Make up gone and hairs a mess –

Reckon this trip could be our last time!

Now a lock – god this is hard –

Perhaps he’ll come and help –

Why is he sitting in the dry

While I’m here flogging myself!

Now the lock gates are stuck fast,

What am I going to do?

The gates won’t open fully –

Oh! Maybe he’ll get through!

Oh shit he’s stuck

The boat’s held fast

By gates on either side

Looks like we won’t get too far –

Bet that will hurt his pride!

 

(We went on to marry the following year and had many more boat trips together – all resulting in some kind of adventure!)

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The Seven Stages of Woman

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I have told this story before – but I thought it may be fun to try and ‘Shakespearise’ it by using iambic pentameter, rhyming couplets – plus a little imagination!

‘Mewling and Puking’

Young Woman:  (enters)

How now old woman, why look you so sad?

Old Woman:  (sitting daydreaming)

Come hither my friend. You make my heart glad!

A far distant memory I recall,

From bygone days, when I was small.

Peering through dim eyes so far back in time

I see my mother with her hand in mine.

Young Woman: (laughing)

Forsooth for you ‘twas some time ago!

I’m surprised you still find the memory so!

Old Woman: (glares at young woman but ignores comment)

I see Ma with her bike pushing me to school

And me trying desperately to stay cool.

I remember the fear I felt inside,

But refused to cry out because of pride.

Young Woman:  (cheerily)

Your mind tosses merrily in the wind   (rhymes with find)

Keep digging deeper to see what you find!

How say you now? What more can you see?

So please you to spend this hour merrily!

Old Woman:  (thinking)

I spy a rotund man, who’s grumpy and old,

Clad in jumper of yellow, with countenance cold.

His grey hair ‘tis sparse, his red face ‘tis grim,

Fear hits my belly as my eyes fall upon him!

I peep from my hiding place on the stair,

Perchance he won’t see me sitting there!

Transported back to an age long ago

I still feel the shame and blush that ‘tis so.

Young Woman:  (excited)

Why comes he a’ knocking at your door?

What brings on your fear? Oh pray tell me more!

What did this gentleman to cause your plight?

My heart is beating with all of its might!’

Old Woman:

I was but small and to show I was brave

I took on a challenge to honour my name!

Young Woman:

What was this challenge? Oh, tell me I pray!

Old Woman:

‘Twas to knock on his door – and to then run away!

Young Woman:

How many knocks did they charge you to do?

Old Woman:

I cannot recall but ‘twere quite a few!

MAN: (enters shouting)

‘Bring that treacherous child at once to me!’

Old Woman:  (in fear)

His voice rang out loud, showing no mercy!

So draggéd was I up to the front door

My cries ringing out and fear at my core!

MAN

 ‘This wench will be punishéd,’ he cried,

‘Cut off her hands and gouge out her eyes!

Never again my door will she knock!

Away with her now, put her head on the block!

She deserves to be punishéd today!’

He turned in glee, ‘Do it quickly I pray!’

MOTHER:  (pleading)

‘Alack and alas don’t treat her so bad.’

Old Woman:

Ma’s eyes brimming over – her face so sad.

She raised her hand to hit me – but instead

Clouted the little man about his head!

He fell to the ground cursing Ma for her sin,

While she battered his head with a rolling pin!

Mother:  (angrily)

‘How dare you to harm my defenceless child!

Away with you now or you’ll be defiled!

‘Twas a harmless prank played out with mirth!

Take your sour temper home, along with your girth!’

Old Woman:

He rose to his feet, rubbing his backside,

Leaving foul words unspoken – along with his pride!

She then turned her wild eyes upon me –

I knew at that moment ’twas time to flee!

‘Forgive me Mother,’ I cried, ‘for my sin!’

‘Twas then I experienced the rolling pin!

*****

Guardian of the Forest

One morning as I was walking my dogs I saw a shape in the bark of a tree.

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Silent, suspicious, standing sentinel,

Watchful, waiting, vision keen.

Woodland guardian,

Night time gate-keeper,

Protector of wild life,

Unmoving, unseen.

Eyes alert, darting, demonic.

His statue-like form says ‘trespasser beware!’

Entry here won’t go unnoted,

Every footstep will be noticed.

Only fools will take their chances,

As perched up high amongst the branches

The guardian of the forest sits

Frozen by time.

*****

 

Weakness beneath my feet.

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A cavernous pit hidden by undergrowth,

To be seen is weakness,

A weak structure

Weakness is failure.

Cover it!

The layers grow, fronds piled high.

The ground beneath is fragile.

The pit remains unseen, ground appearing stable.

If no one walks across then all is well.

Yet people may cross

Allowing the ground to cave in, revealing its content.

Unveil the trap before fears become reality

Before someone gets hurt – I get hurt!

But if the pit be seen, its instability revealed –

If the demons trapped beneath come flying out

Then insecurity is viewed – strength fractured –  weakness exposed.

Which is worse, hiding them or allowing them to rise?

Why so fearful of letting them come out?

Does trapping them save weakness being seen

Or is it just a ploy to save myself – a healing strategy –

Buried oh so deep that coming to the surface now is harder!

Push them back! I will never have them viewed!

If they don’t come out they cannot harm me.

Maybe one day I’ll feel strong enough to let them go

Until then they stay – and no one need ever know.

                                        *****