Monday, 31 January 2011

31st pebble

Over the M6,
past some hens in a field,
the sun shines on the 13:09 from Carlisle.
Sheep in a field
cast long shadows,
and pay no attention to the man in coach D
going South again.

Sunday, 30 January 2011

Catching up on pebbles.

One day left in the month, so today I'm going to bring these up to date with the last few days. Tomorrow, I'm on the move, so there may be a battle with the technology to try and post the last pebble on time.


Filling the pen --
the ink bottle needs tilting now.


The CD's finished
but still the machine hums.
a bell strikes twelve.


On a frosty morning,
a VW camper sits parked,
opened doored. --
a cup of tea,
steaming on its table.


A year on my dressing table,
three pine cones.
"Look after these Dad." --
will she remember?


Sunday morning
 in the church car park,
laughs and back patting over,
they wave at each other,
as they drive off.

Friday, 28 January 2011

Back again pebbles


Passing Stirling,
fog rises from the snow,
engulfing hedgerows and trees


Paper cup of tea in hand,
standing in the pebbles
 at the seas edge,
a couple and a dog
take shape
in the mist.


Against the kirks side wall
lies a boss of John Knox,
broken nosed.


The spade scrapes on the concrete,
turning two handfuls of lime
into the black loam.


Tuesday night,
the stained glass in the church
is lit up.

Wednesday, 26 January 2011

More offshore pebbles


The ebb and flow
of water in the scuppers - -
looking out on waves.


the tanker lurches high in the air
as we dive,
but the hose remains connected
and the oil flows.


Past the blast wall,
volumes rise.
Shouted conversations,
into faces.


Met Office graphs,
over cups of tea.

Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Offshore pebbles


Deep within the pipework
a shout,
another yard of cable.


Passing on the walkway
a nod,
a noiseless greeting
into the wind.


A crane screams
and six tones
of chemical tank
are hoisted into the air.


An oil can,
crude oil,
running the world.


Yesterday's work,
done today --
memories of a moment's silence.


Somewhere in the dark
the horizon lies,
between these waves
and the moon.

Monday, 10 January 2011

Six pebbles


The girl in Cafe Nero
stopped to make a note in a notebook - -
Two consecutive pebbles?


Flight delay -
Walking a carpeted mile
of hotel corridor,
repeated pictures,
and finished room service trays.


The engine noise drops a few tones
and we're still for a moment
before the helideck comes into view.


Snow on the portside
muffles the mechanical hum.
Somewhere above, a steam line,
below, the sea.


just beyond the orange pipework
and girders,
beyond the halogen glare,
it's nighttime - -
a hundred miles
from the nearest streetlight.


The sun sinks early tonight
behind some distant cloud.
The coppered waves rush west,
leaving us with ordinary birds.

Tuesday, 4 January 2011

A pebble for the 4th

Five afternoon sounds

The uneven beat of the electric fire fan
and the occasional leafing of a new page.
Outside a reversing van drowns out a distant gull,
then silence.

Monday, 3 January 2011

A river of stone 1st, 2nd & 3rd

There's an interesting site that I found via The Crafty Green Poet . The River of Stones is asking us to take a little moment of every day in January and write a few words about it - A little pebble poem. Naturally, being me, I'm leaving this till the last moment i.e. late. But in the early hours of last night, which I'm going to technically designate still the 2nd, I wrote

Lying in the darkness
listening to my breath
as the day fades out.

Today, though slightly outside the rules, looking back on the 1st I wrote.

New years morning -
The sky and birdtable birds
are just like yesterday.

And for today

Over the rooftops
pigeons on an ancient chimney
jostle for position.

Sunday, 2 January 2011

I took a walk in Scotland

I took a walk in Scotland,
in a glen with a ruined croft,
where high on the wind a curlew’s song
cried, "now how are your brothers?
where have they gone?"

I took a walk in Scotland,
out in the shadows on a rainy beach,
out to where the cutter stranded,
and the dark Atlantic rolled
a weary wave upon the sand.

I took a walk to escape
images of death and tears on the radio,
but what was behind was also in front.
What should have been buildings,
are not even boulders,
but dust.
What should have been lives,
are not even bodies,
but parts.
What should have?
What might have?
What will?
I took a walk in Scotland,
And found myself out in the world.

The old water cat

There’s life in the old water cat yet,
dew laden in the morning
and the milky dog
lies in a shaft of sunlight
waiting for the dust to settle.

In front of the begonia window,
on ancient leather and horsehair
we sink and dream of an age of steam,
hellos in the street,
simplicity and the freshly turned earth,
before the mist sets in.

Where is the old water cat now,
dew laden in the morning
and still and the milky dog
lies in a shaft of sunlight
waiting for the dust to settle.