Category Archives: Poetry.

The ant army.

The ant army

I was sat on a wall just musing
When an army of ants came along
With a lot of military hoo-hah
And a pagan victory song
They were led by a Colonel called Mustard
Who walked arm in arm with the queen
While the ant behind had a dead fly
To be eaten for supper it seemed
By two, by two, by twenty
With bugles, trumpets and drums
They marched and walked and stumbled
And occasionally wiggled their bums
Some carried leaves so enormous
They couldn’t keep up with the throng
Till a sergeant major in ant terms
Came back to push them along
Onwards and forwards they ventured
Over paths, up walls, around trees
While the old ants fell to the wayside
Tired feet, aching backs and old knees
The ants of the world they were marching
But not one of them knew as to where
And not one of them dared ask that question
Or maybe not one of them cared
Young ants were born on the route march
As the dead they were carried along
Ants went to school and then married
To the strains of an ant marriage song
Nothing it seemed could stop them
Their journey an energy stream
From here to the distant horizon
As one in search of a dream
A column of ants on a highway
A road only they could perceive
Their goal lay unseen in the distance
But it lived in their souls to believe
As the day slipped by so I watched them
A nation of ants on the move
Maybe ants being ants with no logic
Or a species with something to prove.

 

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Black Hambleton.

There was me and Black Hambleton
And the ghost of Mally Wright
Hiding whilst the sun it shone
We wait for the dead of night
I laid there in the heather
Watching clouds fast, scurry by
There was danger out there looming
‘Neath this grey, forbidding sky
Out from near the village
Came the clattering of hooves
That echoed from the hillside
Onto deep red pan tile roofs
A rider was approaching
In the blackest of black gowns
Two pistols tucked within his belt
His hat was pulled deep down
The folk who walked the cobbled path
Did hasty give him room
For here upon the blackmost steed
There rode impending doom
The villagers they crossed themselves
Their prayers did sudden lack
As the snorting horse it galloped by
With the beast upon it’s back
I stood then from my heather lair
Moved to it’s path to stand
And looked along this road of fate
With destiny at hand
Closer, ever closer
The thunder grows it’s pace
This devil on his black, black steed
Falls further now from grace
The one thing that the innocents
Who turn in fear can’t see
Tis’ that I who stand in the horses path
And it’s rider, both are me.

 

Lost

The hand that was reaching out
Hangs loosely by my side
The dreams I began to dream
Have ceased to dream and died
The journey that had lay before
Just now an empty road
The emptiness that now I feel
A heavy, worthless load
The sky that was brightly blue
Is heavy now with rain
The heart that was full aglow
Is loaded now with pain
The lips that I sought to kiss
Have turned to face away
And the sweet, sweet words that once I heard
Are bitter now today
The hand that was reaching out
Now empty by my side
And the dreams that I thought to have
Have crumbled, gone and died.

 

Losing you.

You think I wasn’t there but I was there

I held your hand all through the night

Every breath that you breathed I was breathing

Every battle you fought I did fight

You think I wasn’t there but I was there

The pains that I felt were for real

Your anguish, despair and your suffering

Everything you felt I could feel

You think I wasn’t there but I was there

I stood bowed with God at my side

The tears that I wept could have drowned me

My emotions had nowhere to hide.

You think I wasn’t there but I was there

I was the one shaking in fright

I prayed that I would be taken

In return for you lasting the night

You think I wasn’t there but I was there

Each moment, each second, each day

You may think I wasn’t there but I was love

Every moment, every second, every day.

 

Death row.

I recently read a John Grisham novel about a man on death row and this poem came into my mind shortly afterwards, so I wrote it down and share it with you, not for any ghoulish reason and not because I am either in favour or against the death penalty, purely because it was a poetic reaction to what I had read.

 

 

My skin would soon be burning

I was just three paces from hell

After twenty-two years on death row

And a lifetime in prison cells

They wrapped me in chains to bind me

As if I had someplace to run

With guards stood around in a circle

Wielding baton, rifle and gun

The priest he gave me forgiveness

And asked if I wanted to pray

I gave him a smile and shook my head

Said ‘Father, no praying this day.’

They tied me to the chair in silence

As the witnesses looked on in dread

The clock ticked loudly and slowly

Counting the seconds till dead

They say that your life swims before you

But it didn’t for me I must say

I just gazed out at the faces

As my seconds ticked on and away

The black hood it took away vision

All but the ticking had gone

I thought I heard a guard counting

Three, two and then one………

 

Dusty Springfield.

Come back Dusty.

I was driving through downtown Darlington, slowly.

It was the early morning traffic that slowed me down.

Drifting through Darlington,

Watching the people scurrying up and down the pavements

Hurrying somewhere or nowhere, but scurrying anyway.

The radio was on but I wasn’t listening

Until

The first few notes of a song punched it’s way into my empty mind.

Dusty

One could recognise her voice instantly

‘Going back’

Probably my favourite Dusty song.

Her voice sent shivers down my spine, I loved it

And loved the song.

‘Come back Dusty’ I thought to myself.

I would have loved to have seen her in concert, but never did.

She sang on, through my radio

I couldn’t seem to hear the words any more,

I could just hear that amazing soulful voice, piercing my heart.

Haunting me.

‘Come back Dusty’

Why is it that so many good and talented people go before they should?

The song finished and I turned the radio off rather than listen to something else.

Me and the ghost of Dusty Springfield cruised along the road.

I thought of others

Karen Carpenter, the beautiful silky voiced young American singer.

What would she have sounded like now had she lived to grace our lives?

Jimmy Hendrix

Jim Morrison

Janis Joplin

Mama Cass

So many of my generation.

Gone before they should.

Just me and Dusty now on the A66

Not quite as romantic as Route 66

But it’s all we have.

We’re going back.

Me and Dusty.

The sky is moody, black clouds carrying rain

But for the moment we are in sunshine.

The song runs again in my mind

And for a moment I hear Karen Carpenter singing backing vocals.

Just angels singing in my mind.

The passenger seat is empty.

Come back Dusty.

 

P.S. If you have never heard Dusty singing ‘Going back’ treat yourself. Close your eyes and listen.