The Loss

Less of a hole

More a chasm

To lose someone close.

It is as if the world pauses

And only the cooing of the pigeons 

Remains in the gathering darkness. 

Fragments of memories surface and fall

Drowned in tears of regret

Of things left undone or unsaid. 

Only the assurance that it

Was a long life, fulfilled

Help to fill the gulf of despair. 

A whole generation now gone

Farewell precious friend.

Yesterday I visited the Holy Ghost ruins in Basingstoke – more of which on another occasion, only to return home and get a call about a sad death. I leave you with the poem above.

Poem and photos copyright Englepip©



Poor Old Tree

When you planted me so long ago at the side of the track
Did you know I would outlive you?
Did you countenance the life that I would give
Not just to self replicate but in harbouring others?
From insects small to tawny owl nesting in my hollow.
Did you contemplate the years of shade
That I would afford travellers down this lane
From farm boy labourers to coaches drawn
And then to cranking cars and back to men?
Did you know that centuries later your ancestors
Would stand beneath me and wonder at my age
Drinking in the air that I expire and admire me
Almost as a generous god?
For the peace and the calm and the life I can give.

You would be sad to see how the world
Is treated with disdain
Your progeny, no longer guardians
But ravagers of nature
Greedy for expansion.
I weep and yearly drop my limbs,
Shrinking from the world at large
Drawing in on myself: to nothing.


Then drunk in their own excesses
They will choke on their own vomit
And there will be nothing you nor I can do.

Poem and photo copyright Englepip©

Reflections

When I stare out across the wide salt flats
I count my blessings, from a life so full
I’ve seen so much of beauty unsurpassed
In hills and dales; and becks that trickle past;
Of lakes that gleam with orange sunset light
Or slow appear from out a mist at dawn
From hills all bronzed with bracken-coloured growth
And crags dramatic grey in slanting rain.
I’ve heard the birdsong in the green hedgerow
And listened as the buzzard keens her call
Crossed hillsides where the sheep bleat all the day
Smelled garlic wild along the woodland way.
Although my body now is rather frail,
I see and hear and scent as on the trail,
For senses come to life each live long day
As the river washes all my cares away.
She stops in shallows near my wooden seat
Reflecting all that’s past just at my feet
I ponder on the waters on the sand
And know from these reflections from above
That heaven for me, is very close at hand.


Poem and photo copyright Englepip©

I wrote this poem after visiting Arneside and Silverdale, which is close to the Lake District in the UK, where I have spend many holidays. The Lake District is one of the prime hiking locations in the UK famed for its wonderful combination of mountains and lakes. Arneside and Silverdale is nearby and in fact you can see the hills in the distance from there but the river is the main attraction here. As we walked along the riverside, there were elderly couples sitting and reflecting and taking in the sunset. I imagined the thoughts of one gentleman there as he sat with his walking stick deep in thought.

Beware thistles

The dying thistles blow in the wind
Spreading next year’s crop
Of pain and beauty
Floating on the breeze.
Beautiful at a distance
They provide some
Sustenance for insects and birds,
Until on an urge to reproduce
They send out their
Seemingly innocent progeny,
On wings of fluffy parachutes
To colonise the world
In the same guise.
Then turning their shameless heads
Upwards, like little suns
Of self satisfaction
Too late they realise their
Mistake
And hang their heads
In death and repentance.


Such is misinformation
Difficult to stop
Attractive to look at
Apparently benevolent
But inflicting
Pain that pricks at our heels
And stabs our fingers.
And which misinformation,
Seeds itself in ways
That we cannot anticipate.

Beware thistles.

Poem and Photo Copyright to Englepip©

Solo survival strength

You think you’re alone
Cut off; shut in
Shunned by the world and
Separated by lockdown.


But look at your self
Look closely now
Search inside your mind.


There are intricate memories
Pictures of
Places been
Things seen.
Moments of
Complex relationships
Conversations had
Discussions
You
Could have had
Might have had
Maybe will have
And they can all be worked out
Listened to
Responded to
By your alter ego.


We are never only one.
How many names do you have?
All them you!

You are not alone.


And if you have a God
You also know He is there
Listening to you
Feeling your pain
Supporting you
And lying beside you in the darkest night
Holding you in your dreariest hour.

Never despair.
We are all more than one;
Always with you.
Strong.

This poem was inspired by looking at my photograph of this Echinacea. I zoomed in and found so many different levels and intricacies and I thought that within any structure in nature there is so much more, especially in the human mind – so many of us in one. Always more than one.

Photo and poem copyright Englepip©