Friday, December 1, 2023



I have been stuck in a traffic jam
cars and vans and lorries and bikes
jumbled up unable to make their way
jostling for position for the getaway
nothing progressed at all for months
and all I could do was identify the
that were all the many stresses in my life
not being able to focus on any one of them
compounding the stress and the traffic
Suddenly an acupuncturist or an osteopath,
almost certainly, has shown one vehicle how
to navigate out of the melee and start a
making a space for the next vehicle to
straighten up and leave, like one of those puzzles
with only one space but the corner shape must
and now all the vehicles are moving
each in a separate lane on the motorway
(though the bikes must make their by another
All the types of vehicle are still present
but moving at their own pace
at variable speeds stopping and starting
and I have clarity at last
and I am back in my own body
and in my own head and I have found

Sunday, November 5, 2023

Seeing the Real You at Last

Seeing The Real You At Last
today I have a glimpse of the real you at last
“we know a song about that”
(sorry Bob) in my grief
today you are present in that way
that dead people have
when they have got into your soul
and I comprehend the hugeness of it all
I hear myself reeling off
“my partner died, then Covid struck,
then I broke my shoulder, then …”
as if bereavement was a small thing
(but it is vast)
and at last I allow myself to consider
what my therapist would have asked,
(she, the wise woman who questioned ‘accidents’)
and I see, really see in that
bone-deep, mind-expanding way
that my lack of attention before I tripped,
“doing marvellously” when I had Covid
(the first and second time)
and generally carrying on
yes, stoic(ally), that thing
I never am and wouldn’t do me any good
(and hasn’t)
I carried on stoically,
believing I was still doing really well considering
but putting off the day
pointlessly, painfully, but somehow
always knowing the day would come
when I see the real you at last
(again) and have to grieve




Wednesday, September 6, 2023


This poem is dedicated to all those who grieve, some of whom are not able to speak out about how they feel.  This is for you.


Thin as the best tissue paper

clear, bright colours

salmon, startling red, pink, and white.

The white ones are first -

tiny but perfect circles;

I have never seen geranium petals

attacked like this before.

Late-season butterflies

which always seem so strong

still flutter by early autumn flowers

dodging away at high speed

when I come close;

they have war-wounded wings

with bites taken out.

My Westie thought

he was a mastiff

till he stood on a wasp

amongst windfall pears

and hobbled around

holding his wounded paw aloft,

an uncomprehending puppy again.

All exhibiting their vulnerability

for us to see

and remark on.

Mine is hidden.

We all think I'm a strong person

we all know I am dealing with a lot

we are all impressed with how

I am organising and getting through

my life and its many troubles;

we know it is hard.

But inside I ache

I weep

I grieve

I long

for a comforting cuddle

from my Mum

from my Dad

from my Mike

and actually from anyone

which I'll never have again.

This is my


hitherto unspoken


Tuesday, July 18, 2023

Death and Love


Death and Love

waiting for his death
which will be any day now
I have been expecting it
and to feel finally defeated
a sort of
who shouldn’t love again
too many bereavements
finally abandoned
undeserving of love.
I have a sudden insight
I should love more people
not fewer
I should know
and get to know
on my wavelength
the same humour
music food
then when there are other
as there will be
I will still have
people to love
who love me.