What Lies Beyond?

What Lies Beyond?

Day 23 of 30 Days of Poetry

A sketch in pen on lined paper of a track curving away, through a gate in a wall. Two trees stand by the side of the track, casting shadows across it
This well-trod path, how well is known
What lies beyond its every turn.
How small it feels to legs age-grown,
When once the distance caused concern.

In days of youth it carried knights
To boldly rescue maidens fair
And hosted bright-imagined flights
That thrilled the children playing there.

And yet this world of fun and play
All lay within restricted bounds:
Stout ramparts circled, tall and grey,
To seal the limits of the grounds.

The gate stayed barred although I'd strain,
Pulled by its enigmatic thrall,
The burning question in my brain:
What marvels lay outside the wall?
Fate

Fate

Day 21 of 30 Days of Poetry

The word wyrd, letters shaped in an old-fashioned style, in black on textured white paper
It's said what's for you won't go by
No matter how you run or hide.
The swiftest arrow cannot fly
Beyond the reach of time and tide.

Does life mean less cut short at birth
Than when one lives to ripe old age?
How best to reckon one soul's worth
Would tax the mind of any sage.

Each dawning day might be your last
So why not spend it in good cheer?
And once the final die is cast
Embrace your lot with conscience clear.

Forget about outrunning Fate:
Your life's to live, not sit and wait.

Wyrd biþ ful aræd

Old English, from “The Wanderer”: Fate is totally relentless
The Shuffle Man

The Shuffle Man

Day 19 of 30 Days of Poetry

A man, head bowed and facing away, silhouetted against a dramatic sky.
The shuffle man, his furtive hands
Balled tight in threadbare pockets,
Takes shuffle steps, then shifty scans,
Eyes twitching in their sockets.

Cap hooded close, with shadow face,
Head down between his shoulders,
Slips silent through abandoned space
Where jilted ardour moulders.

Be watchful dear, and wary wise
When out for trysting pleasure
For shadow lairs hold shuffle eyes
That hunger for sweet treasure.
Family Ties

Family Ties

Day 17 of 30 Days of Poetry

A photo of a middle-aged woman with red hair and a warm smile
"Just let it go," is what they said,
"Don't store it up inside your head."
But even though the memories hurt,
To bury them beneath the dirt
Would be to lose a vital part
And risk you fading from my heart.

So I would rather face the pain
Of never seeing you again
If that's the price I have to pay
For thinking of you every day.
I only hope that I can be
The kind of mum you were to me.