Valentine’s Day is right around the corner . Some of you may treat this day as an annoyance while others see it as an excuse to spread love whether you are in a relationship or not. The last few years, my boyfriend & I have gotten dressed up & have gone out to some Italian […]Celebrate Valentine’s Day at Home This Year — Mind. Beauty. Simplicity
Home has to be made
It is settled and peaceful
Bless our family
Copyright Francis Barker 2020
The chilling chords reverberate
around this cathedral space
There are never any words
yet always you deny my place
my expression of love and peace
and truth –
to accuse me of the traits you exude in floods
Yes I was foolish in my youth
and you saw that as weakness
Now there’s no place that I call home
though a nameless land remains
through which I roam
copyright Francis Barker 2019
Let us wipe our eyes
because the end is not yet
Return to the one
who has called us all back home
to this unexpected truth
copyright Francis Barker 2019
My home is a castle in need, because
of who I am, for all that went before.
Living close to a sea I rarely saw,
I rode bikes, losing trees, clothes on the way,
all scale of self to glimpse some grey ocean,
a lone redshank wail from his muddy creek
and rise into blanket skies, scorning me.
I didn’t know then, nor do I pretend
to know now exactly what’s hurting me,
but the funk of youth is bitterness now.
The shining ship which might’ve saved me, white
sails riding threshold waves — it didn’t come.
Abandoned, the sailor who never was,
behind terse barricades, counting the days
poem © copyright df barker 2012
*image © Neil Smith
He was looking at the rivulets
stuttering down the glass,
ignoring the sodden cat on the windowsill
and the puddles in the grass.
Sitting down, I braced myself:
He’d say it wouldn’t do any harm.
I suppose it was his way of seeing things
when in the safe and warm.
Never mind that spring was passing,
never mind that I’d forked the grass over
for five darn days on end,
to drain away the numerous ponds.
Yet still there are some who insist
that we are the lucky ones!
So I put on my best April gear,
braving the cold and the wet.
I had to get out of his face, you see,
to hear some pessimism instead,
about the weather, the world,
or the state of this or that.
Sadly though, I have to say,
rain makes even the shy ones talk,
though they’d better watch out —
because I’ll be stabbing with my fork!
poem and image © copyright df barker 2012
The Poppy Murders
They have gone,
all the poppies. Gone.
Please, don’t look at me like that,
it was none of my doing and
besides, there’s too many seeds.
You would have to sift the soil
to find them all, believe me,
and you know I’m not that patient.
It’s not that I hate them, who would?
So delicate and bright,
like bloodied tissue, though
they did rather crowd the lavender
last year you must admit,
sort of snuffed it out if I recall.
In the end, with a heavy heart
I had to dig it out, remember?
So, yes, maybe I did strip them back,
(just a touch, with a scythe),
merely to protect, you understand,
that last remaining lavender bush.
And after all, we should be satisfied
that the poppy grows wild
almost anywhere. Except here.
image and poem © copyright dfbarker 2012
**poem first published in poetry collection ‘Anonymous Lines’, available at amazon.com
* image is sketch in oil
*it’s so cold here I needed something to remind me of heat!
You’d think the crabs would learn,
like the canny herring gull does,
buzzing anyone suspected
of bearing food
Generations have stood, sat,
squatted on this spot
overlooking the wide harbour,
an untamed marsh,
engaged by the melding
of land, sea and air,
dangling bait tied to sodden strings.
It’s easy meat for crab and kid alike,
a great treat to see
their briny sojourns in buckets,
arrayed like lines of medals on concrete.
Soon we’ll let them go,
watch each one plop into the murk.
We’ll be back to coax another day,
warmed by the thought of them
in cold dark depths,
waiting for next time
© copyright dfbarker 2012