Tuesday, 31 January 2012


 Hope stands at the altar,
The mic ready to carry his voice to the world’s people.
He is powerful; and frail,
A dark face against a dark suit.

You may not recognise Hope in this form,
But he is her none-the-less.
Spes and Elpis having played their part,
She simply has a different, darker, face.

Her harp, now a voice,
Slow and steady; self-assured,
Like the rising of the sun,
Hinting at the possibility of a beautiful new day.

But, Hope's enemies are as always present,
Greed and war, hate and ignorance.
The question, now as ever,
Can Hope overcome these foes?

This is the dilemma,
For Hope always brings with her, fear.
Fear that says, what if he fails,
That says, beautiful words but where are the actions

I fear, for I Hope,
And if Hope fails me,
It will hurt all the more,
For I had the audacity to Hope in the first place

Go an inkling who this poem is about, or no idea at all? You'll have to watch the video below to see!

I wrote this poem while in China working as a journalist and covering the election of a new president of an important country, who I thought personified Hope.

Hope: "the feeling that what is wanted can be had or that events will turn out for the best", the feeling that all our dreams are possible, that the world can be a better place where all are truly valued, that mankind could actually live in peace free from fear and prejudice.

The great image of another face of Hope above from the great blog Behind the Lines: Poetry, War, & Peacemaking

Below is a video of President Obama answering questions during the inaugural Ask the President 2012 Google+ hookup where everyday people could ask questions important to them:

Great little qoute:
“If a little dreaming is dangerous, the cure for it is not to dream less but to dream more, to dream all the time,” Marcel Proust.

Thursday, 26 January 2012

A Cemetery at Night

A cemetery is a place where your imagination takes fright,
Up on the wings of an inky crow’s flight.

Dead hands push up through the fecund soil,
Because in your head creativity does toil.

One look at the mound of a grass covered grave,
And in your mind you become fears slave.

But why do these places of remembrance & rest,
Set quaking the knees of any but the best?

All you need do is your mind control,
And through this quiet place you'll simply roll.

 While studying in Australia I used to ride home from university and found that ducking home through the roads of a local cemetery was the fastest way. This was fine during the day but after trying a couple of times at night I found I scared myself too much and gave up. This got me thinking, what is so frightening about cemeteries.

How do you feel in cemeteries?

Sunday, 22 January 2012

I've been a rock climber for many a year

The words of the poem are read/sung to the tune of the song above,
'The Wild Rover' played by The Dubliners:

I've been a rock climber for many a year
I've been a rock climber for many a year,
And spent all me money on rock climbing gear,
Now I've no money and me fingers are sore,
And I swear that I'll be a rock climber no more.

And it's no, nay, never, (Jangle yah nuts!)
No, nay, never, no more,
(I swear that) I'll be a rock climber no more,
No never, no more!

I went to the crag I used to frequent,
And told my belayer my fingers were spent,
I said to her 'climb on', she answered me nay!
You're the rock climber I only belay.

And it's no, nay, never, (handle the jugs)
No, nay, never, no more,
(I swear that) I'll be a rock climber no more,
No never, no more! 

Half way up a cliff and spread 'em  I did,
Into the crack, the sweet crack I slid,
She called from the bottom now don't go too deep,
If your long fingers you'll be wanting to keep!

And it's no, nay, never, (finger the crack)
No, nay, never, no more,
(I swear that) I'll be a rock climber no more,
No never, no more! 

The poem in this case is an Irish rock climbing ballad, which as far as I was told comes from the University of Dublin Rock Climbing Club. I'm a keen climber and love Irish poetry and writing so I enjoy it. I played around with the choruses and third verse.

What do you think? Any changes or ideas for a fourth verse?

The two climbing photos are of myself and my beautiful girlfriend climbing in the Peak District in England and on stunning Mt Maunganui in New Zealand.

I climb the crack upon the cliff/ that claimed all of my courage//
Without my courage no crack I climb/for only cliffs I care to see//

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

He wants me to be

He wants me to be brave and courageous,
To speak when he would’ve stayed silent.
To stick by what I believe in,
To achieve all that I’m able.
He wants me to succeed where he failed,
He loves me.
He is my father.

I wrote this poem in 2007 after getting some advice from my Dad. I was thinking about what he had said, what he wanted for me life, what motivated him. He is a very deep thinking and, I think, wise person who I have a lot of respect for. 

I only wish two things, one that everyone was so fortunate, and two that I live up to our hopes.

Now normally I have a micro-poem of my own but instead found this great poem/spoken word piece on fatherhood from another blog:

Father Figure

I Figure a Father Figure is one who does more than bring home Further Figures. In Fact A Father Figure is A Figure of speech; for fathers unlike our forefathers have the power of four fathers and so are more than just one figure.

I Figure a Father Figure is determined by the two definitions of an Action Figure. He can be a figure of action who acts on heart and mind alike. Or he can be an action figure….just a still sculpture of material that does nothing but lie or stay still, no heart and no mind.

I Figure a Father Figure who doesnt Figure as a Father gives his child two choices. They can have a reaction which works two ways but usually ends up the worse way; gangs, guns, drugs, negativity. OR they can have a re-action; rebuild and take action, constructing a life that figures more useful than their father could imagine.

I Figure a Father Figure is a Father that Figured.

Sunday, 15 January 2012

Self sacrifice

He struggles on, lost, disorientated, alone,
The water tugs at his heels, slowing him.
But his lonely death is already assured,
To his kind separation is death.
An adventurer or a loner, lost and forgotten,
Sacrificed to the nests constant need for nourishment.
No poems will be written to his passing,
No statues erected in his memory.
For in a society that cares only about the survival of the whole,
The death of one means nothing.

I wrote this poem after finding an ant struggling to get out of a basin with the water droplets slowing it. I helped it out, at the same time realising the futility of doing so, because apparently once separated from the scent trails made by others in their nest, ants are sure to die. It seemed callous that this was fine as long as the hive survived. 

Then I wondered, are our societies the same in regards to our opinions relating to war or social justice issues like homelessness, health care, drug addiction, and economic competition?

Your thoughts?

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

My muse

My muse,
O’ beauteous she,
She does such wondrous things to me,
I feel no fear or trepidation,
For she’s an endless source, of inspiration.
The world made clear in black and white,
I know just what I’m here to fight.

A torch in the night, courage she gives,
I know I’ll be strong as long as she lives.
Whether near or far,
My shining star,
A better man I’ll be,
And all, because of she.

I wrote this poem a few years ago while thinking about what it was that inspired me to write poems most often and grappling with the ancient idea of the Muse goddesses. 

I am re-posting this poem for dVersePoets poetic on 'Poems about Poetry'. I have written another poem more related to the subject, 'Of what to write?', but many of the dVersePoets have already read it.

What is it that gives you your creativity and inspires your life?

Beautiful photo of a statue of the Muse Tallia in St-Petersburg, Russia. By Andrej Antipin

Sunday, 8 January 2012

Her perfume

 Great photo is by Solenne-J-Art

One whiff, and she’s here.
Not entirely, more, sweet memories,
A first kiss, a smile, a dinner date.
The sweet, floral scent lingers,
Happiness takes over, I relax.
She may be thousands of miles away,
But while it remains, she's here.

Written on the 03/12/2010, this poem describes a situation which came about while I was packing up some of my girlfriends things before I left Australia to join her in Italy after 2 months apart. I found a bottle of her perfume, a very distinct perfume made of all natural ingredients, and as the poem describes "one whiff, and she" was with me.
Have you ever experienced something similar?

Micro Poetry:
Quality is victory, tenacity is strength.
Optimism breads equality, courage goes the length.

Saturday, 7 January 2012

Oh! The Places you'll go - A tribute to Dr Seuss

"You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose"

Just for a change here is one of my favourite poems/stories by Dr Seuss presented in great fashion: