Dream Time

Awakening I see you lying beside me
Your fine silver hair hides you from my view 

My mind travels back to where it all started
Icy water, red tipped toes, wind blowing the sand

I’d been dreaming that we flew over an ocean
Watching a wave born and speeding away

The same wave is then swirling around us
And dying just as it kisses your feet

I’m thinking, how lucky I am to find you
How lucky to have you here in my arms

Footfall on the stair, the tinkle of china
You stir and blink sleepily at our new day

Someone says, “Tea?” He enters the bedroom
Wearing my face.  I wake. You’re not there


Sometimes all seems broken
An unbridgeable void to you
Distant words no longer clear
The melancholy echo of a loving time

Sometimes I brave a lonely smile
Not sharing how I feel
Why should others want to know
The emptiness inside me

Sometimes it’s easier to carry
Another sorrow than my own
To be the shield for other pain
A guardian ‘gainst their fears

Sometimes I think I am beloved
And cannot reason why
Why would you love a lone poor soul
Or hold me when I cry

Sometimes I ache to see your face
And long to have you near
To hear your voice read me to life
And banish my despair

Just Daisies

I thought, I know!  I’ll cut the grass!
Tried to start the trusty mower
It seemed reluctant, coughed and spluttered
Didn’t want to go today

I paused and thought and looked about
A million Daisies smiled and nodded
Clean joyous faces, bright and wide
For whom my youngest child was named

Small honey bees paid courtly visits
Bowing, dipping all around
Then flying home their breeches laden
With all the booty they had found

I quietly put the mower back
I sat and paused with old Earl Grey
I watched the cycle of the flowers
The grass can wait another day

Centurions in the Rain

We cross the traffic in London Rain

En route to our separate trains

My son now looming like

An armoured warrior

By my side

Dwelling on an earlier crossing

When I was the shield

A frail child lost in my arms

Willing with all my heart

That he would be well

He catches me out with

“Bye, I love you.” and

“Take care, Dad!”

I smile then turn away

My tears invisible in the Rain

Shakespeare’s Sonnets – first published this day in 1609

There are 152 to choose from but this I think is the one, at least for someone special……..

Shall I compare thee to a Summer’s day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate:
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,
And Summer’s lease hath all too short a date:
Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines, a
And often is his gold complexion dimm’d;
And every fair from fair sometimes declines,
By chance, or nature’s changing course untrimm’d:
But thy eternal Summer shall not fade,
Nor loose possession of that fair thou ow’st;
Nor shall Death brag thou wand’rest in his shade,
When in eternal lines to time though grow’st:
So long as men can breathe or eyes can see,
So long lives this and this gives life to thee.

Blakeney Point

A Perfect Day

We saw the birds swooping and darting
Or rather they saw us
Protecting their young by feinting
And weaving, tiny boxers with
The sky their ring

I remember the water, icy cold
The waves soaking our jeans
I remember your laughter
Warm and delicious
Like our Spiced Berry

Sand between my toes
Struggling with socks
You were off over the dunes
I remained, alone and thinking
She really is a lovely lady

Walking on, making a find
Samphire so salty it bit my lips
I’d rather it had been you
Back to the car, back to the station
I drove home thinking of you

Spring to Summer

“Oh, do leave the snowdrop there, put it by my bedside table.”
The snow though piles against the walls
Do you feel cocooned or trapped

Dreaming, moving from room to room
Looking for lost children
Waking to find the snowdrift of our bed

Easels on the sand, watery smears of blue and green
Prussian and Cobalt Blue, Viridian and Terre Verte
Skies indistinguished from Seas below

Sitting beneath a big Beech tree in wicker chairs
Flimsy, floaty dress and big straw hat
I tilt it up, and kiss you softly on the cheek

The peppery sweet perfume of Pinks
The heady smell of new mown grass
The mower cuts its swathe

A long hot summer beckons
Barefoot in the grass
Lost in love those Winter thoughts


I’ve often wanted so it seems

To write Bon Mots

To girls in dreams

Encourage them

To bill & coo

With just a Billet Doux (or two)

But now it seems my Savoir Faire

Often really isn’t there

So back I go Pied a Terre

My worst Faux Pas

A Cri de Coeur

to dance a little Pas de Deux

But, lo! It’s not a Cul de Sac

My Belle Epoque

It has come back!

Fait Accompli declare I can!

My Love is here

San Fairy Ann!

With the typical Tommies’ fortitude and good humour in the face of grim reality, “San Fairy Ann”, British Army slang for the French, “Ca ne fait rein” or “It doesn’t really matter”, came into use in WW1.  My grandfather, a pre-war regular who survived the horrors of the trenches, albeit not unscathed, used it often.  I now find myself using it, usually accompanied with a wry smile, and my children have become so used to the phrase that I’m sure it will live on, at least in my family.

Remembrance of Jerusalem


Jerusalem War Cemetery lies in a tiny corner near the village of Chouain, near Bayeux in Normandy. After the 6 June 1944 landings it was the scene of bitter fighting as a German armoured column sought to recapture Bayeux.

Burials started on 10 June and, though it remains one of the smallest CWG Cemeteries, it is especially poignant as it contains the grave of Jack Banks, of the DLI, who, at 16, was the youngest Allied soldier to die in the landings.  The local school children hold a service there every year to celebrate those who gave their lives to liberate France.  I was privileged to be there to join in the ceremony during one of my WW2 lecture tours in Normandy and it remains a moving memory for me.

Remembrance of Jerusalem

Remember how I loved you once

And though my voice is gone

And footfalls soft disturb me not at all

Then Sun-stones of Jerusalem

Will waken with the Dawn

To laughter and the childrens’ happy call

Though paths we trod together

Echo to other steps, and flowers bow

All to my eyes unseen

It doesn’t really matter, for others love you still

And hold my dreams to show you now

Just how it would have been