A WALK IN THE PARK

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An old friend of mine achieved a milestone birthday a few days ago. He’s in Canada, so I couldn’t make the trip. This is what I wrote for him:

A WALK IN THE PARK

What shall I wear for my party?

My shirt with the brightest of stripes?

Or shall I dress more subdued –

In manner and mood –

And go for the dimmest of lights?

*

Shall I manage to stay very sober

Or give way to a dozen pink gins?

Shall I fear that my pleasures are over –

Or announce that the fun just begins?

*

What shall I say to my family?

I fear I may stumble, or weep,

But I know that they think I’m amazing

And won’t chide if I fail to speak.

*

I know that I’ll think about Mother –

Her hats with the feathers and veils,

And I’ll wish that she’d ghost at my party,

As I’m spinning my jokes and my tales.

*

I know that they’ll sing Happy Birthday,

As the candles all glow in the dark,

And I’ll say that I’m glad I’ve been given

A life that’s a walk in the park!

 

He said it was a lovely poem. He especially liked the reference to his Mother who was a very glamorous milliner in her day!

 

 

 

 

DAD AND ME

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Yesterday was my Dad’s birthday and that prompted me to look at some old photos of the family.  We didn’t have many taken in our childhood, but I found one of my dad and I on the promenade at Torquay. It prompted this verse:

 

DAD AND ME

In Torquay,

Dad and me,

Hand in hand,

Beside the sea.

*

Dad’s in his flannels,

Me in school mac,

A pudding bowl haircut,

Brutal and flat.

*

Dad twinkles in glasses,

But they’re tiny and rub,

He’s hoping our outing

Might end in the pub.

*

Just me and my dad,

And I’m feeling quite proud,

But oh if I’d known

As we walked in that crowd,

That summer is fleeting,

The waves rise and freeze,

And me and my dad

Will be ash in the breeze.

 

Sad, but true!

 

 

FONDLY

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I may have mentioned my sister in Tasmania before. I missed her at the New Year [and yes, this blog has been a long time coming, due to computer problems…] but here is the poem I wrote for her.

 

FONDLY

The midnight hour approaches,

The bells resound at last,

And softly, softly, softly,

Comes the vision of the past.

*

Fondly, oh so fondly,

The long lost voices call,

That’s Father from his reading seat,

Mother busy in the hall.

*

She’s sweeping and she’s scrubbing,

While he’s puffing on his pipe

And dreaming of an amber glass

At the Duke of York tonight.

*

But the midnight hour is passing,

And the voices cease to call,

No Father lifts his amber glass,

No Mother strides the hall.

*

Just a child’s voice is calling,

To a child across the sea,

“Oh remember at this midnight hour,

To fondly think of me.”

 

Better late than never..and more to come.

JOHN’S SHOP

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WHAT BECOMES OF US?

Why did we call it John’s Shop?

There was no sign of John

and the shop was a kitchen under the stairs.

Chipped mugs on a shelf

and a knocked about whistling kettle.

We were sixth formers

fifty years ago.

Mostly skinny.

Thrilled

to squeeze  together

chinking our mugs

dreaming of boys.

*

Why do I remember?

*

Today a drab church

and a coffin.

A light shower.

A safe eulogy to wife and Mother.

I thought of school days.

John’s Shop.

Her mug, her tea.

Her unknown future

And mine.

 

What becomes of us?

 

GROTESQUE OR WHAT?

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There’s a shop on a  little street in Tasmania that is full of dolls. I don’t see the point of them. What are they for? Who would want to buy them?

 

DEAD DOLLS IN A HUDDLE

 

They don’t cry

They don’t think

They don’t laugh

They don’t blink.

They’re not warm

They’re not cold

Full of  kapok

Maybe mould.

 

They look so fine

In satin and lace

But death stares out

From every face.

 

 

© copyright Kathleen Fitzmaurice

 

LOVING LEMONS

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IN A TASMANIAN GARDEN

Under an autumn sky

My yellow lemons grew

Until the branches

Bulged with fruit

So I gifted all  to you

*

Under a winter sky

My lemon tree stood bare

I thought of all the bitterness

We couldn’t learn to share

© copyright rhymebydesign

ON A HIGHWAY IN TASMANIA

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Recently I’ve been all the way to Tasmania and that’s the excuse for the long silence on this blog. But now I’m back, and still in poetic action.

Out walking on the highway one day I saw this road side shrine. They always make me wonder about the person who died and the tragic effects on their family.

 

 SHRINE

This is where the brakes  screeched

here on this highway

and I unknowing and unhearing

could not reach

nor try to say

just one last word

of healing.