poetry page 3

The third of five pages of poetry for your perusal.


She sat on the rocks
Watching the waves
Not quite a mermaid
Lacking a tail
But just as alluring
As any young Siren
Hair flowing freely
Silhouetted perfection
Too distant to capture
Except with a camera
Quite out of reach
For ordinary mortals
The stuff of dreams
For young men and old
Quite unaware
Of the impact she's making
Mystical maiden
On the sea shore

david burns


I thought the world would end
If you ever left me
But suddenly the sun is shining
A great cloud has lifted
The pressure of your presence
Has gone and left me light-headed
I now have a future
Instead of a life sentence
Why ever didn't you think of it sooner

I know I was never quite what you wished for
And although I adored you from the start
I never realised how much you dominated me
With your ceaseless demands
For attention and compliance

Thank you, thank you
For finding a new victim
And leaving me to breath again

Please don't bother to call

david burns



See now my love
What you have done to me
Confused I was
But intellectually free
Uncertainty pervaded all my thoughts
Seen with a clarity hard to calculate

But now my love
All doubts have fled my mind
Though intertwined in spirit
And in joy
Complete assurance came with your embrace
My freedom gladly sacrificed
Upon the cross of unconditional love

And yet my love
As time will wield its axe
Fresh obstacles and problems
We must face
Together we will strive to comprehend
What purpose fate
Would have us undertake

So then my love
Our mission will come clear
With hindsight
That is bound to come too soon
Will we achieve potential
From our gifts
And celebrate with pride
Our winning team?

david burns


Two-way Mirror

As I gaze down into
The limpid pools of her eyes
I cannot help reflecting

But I can taste the guilt
Hiding behind the innocence
She portrays like a mask

And in my reflection
I see her silent assessment
Of my own frailties

In this the deepest form
Of human interaction
Not seeking equity
Not judging
Just sharing our mortality

david burns



Distressingly slowly
The queue crawled inexorably
Towards the distant service desk
A few yards ahead of me
Someone tripped
Or was pushed
Out of line
A guard drew his pistol
And shot him dead
Before our eyes
Without a blink
I kept my head down
And wondered
Was that man the lucky one
Would my fate be worse than
Sudden death
A strange form of suicide
Hope does not spring eternal
When your fate is sealed
Keep shuffling on
Maybe they’ll want me for some job
That will keep me alive a bit longer
I suppose that is a kind of hope

david burns 


The rain flies down like nail scissors
Cutting into the peaceful afternoon
Echoing from the disenchanted pavement
Buries the signs of spring away
Beneath a shroud of deep purple gloom

Skylight reverberates in basso profundo 
Symphonic variations
Golfers abandon their handicaps
Huddled under their scant inside out
Faux protection

Early daffodils humbled
Bend to the will of nature
Lose interest in the proceedings
While parched grass rejoices
And watermen dry their tears

Birds and bees shrug their shoulders
They have seen it all before

david burns


As the sun beams through
My window of opportunity
I contemplate catastrophe
Hesitate and am lost
Crouching down in the depths of shadow
Avoiding commitment
I lower the blindfold
That I may not be tempted
To face the world
And risk the ridicule
Of abject failure

What glorious deeds might have been mine
If risk-aversion held less sway
If popular censure brooked no fear
If moral fibre filled my bones
And lilies scorned my liver

As the sun beams through
My window of opportunity
I thrill at the prospect
Of adventure unlimited
Seizing new challenges
Bravely facing my critics
I throw open the curtains
Breath deeply of the new light
March boldly forth
To fulfil my destiny

What failure might have been my lot
If trepidation had held more sway
If fear of failure ruled my mind
If courage were in short supply
And lilies loved my liver

david burns 


A myriad moments
Each one precious
Not to be wasted

The essence is of time
Drink it wilfully
In gluttonous gulps
Or savour it drop by drop

Above all share it
Spend it freely
It cannot be hoarded or banked

Reward comes solely
Through consumption

david burns 


Pair Free

Snuggle-free night of the solitary sleeper
Cold feet absent under thirteen tog
Half-wasted mattress by this pillow weeper
Perhaps I should have bought me a fluffy dog

Primeval urge for body heat sharing
Redundant now in gas-fired home
Freedom to move without disturbing
Nowhere for loving hands to roam

Hope you are happy now you’ve left me
Hope the new partner’s not too rough
Welcome back anytime you get lonely
Solitary sleeper has had enough

david burns 

Culture Shock

I was there
Oh yes I was there
When similes rolled like thunder
And doggerel reigned like cats and dogs
Emancipated illiterati of the pop culture explosion
Penning prose poems like there was no tomorrow
Endlessly replicating shrivelled sentiments
Adulating each other ad nauseam
Strumming three chord
I was there

david burns



Interest has no shame
Emptiness fills the void
Of a lifetime’s failure
To grow in stature
Stunted as a bonsai tree
Talents bushel hidden
From the light of day
Fear enriched
In case of disappointment
Head kept well down
With parapet protection
Lost in the madding crowd
Interest free

david burns 


What tortures must my soul endure
Disordered phrases to outpour?
Must obfuscation rule my rhyme
Nor reason permeate each line?
A poet’s logic is obscure
When littered with non sequitur
But play the game as try I might
My meaning always turns out right

Though logic has no place in art
Which should be felt within the heart
The art of feeling to create
Surely needs must explicate
Without some scheme that might arouse
Chaotic cause we must espouse
Beholders’ minds to beautify
Good practice should exemplify

In art no logic has its place
Where raw emotion’s no disgrace
Invert your sentence if you must
Odd words insert to my disgust
I’ve written on this theme before
But poets still my pleas ignore
I hope my readers will agree
That all are out of step but me

david burns 

The Bookmark

A bookmark yawned... yawn...
And turned another page to keep itself warm
Thinking, "These hardbacks are such a good read,
and so good for the back. I could easily relax
before the owner comes back".

Then a dog-eared page in the tome next door
Began barking out loud and spoiling the mood,
So the bookmark slid down beneath the pages
( at the part where the hero saves a waitress ).

Robert Black


Hotel by the Sea

A washed out weekend at the hotel by the sea
Was emptied out, turned inside out, and upside down to dry,
Then laundered and hoovered and burnished by the setting sun
So that by the time that Friday returned it was ready to receive
A new gust of guests to stay two nights at the hotel by the sea.

Robert Black

The Valentines Day Card

It was only a cardboard crush,
But it was Sealed With A Loving Kiss
And sent to the girl with the gorgeous giggle;
Who returned his attentions with a dry-cleaning bill
For the coffee stain, when she laughed so much
And spilt her cup ( Oh well, it’s a start though ).

Robert Black


F.S. 2001

Our lives were once like thrown dice
Falling upon a kaleidoscope of fertile and stony ground
Whereupon bohemian ‘knights’ grew and pranced and jousted -
Those proud survivors, ignorant of their haphazard surroundings,
Made merry with whatever bounties ‘Mother Nature’ provided;
And though we still fall with the same predictable uncertainty
We now harness ourselves like frail snails to artificial processes
Controlled by rows of numbers marshalled by ticking clocks;
So there, deep within those warm well fed arbitrary boundaries
While our dreams are dreamed for us on television screens
We shelter from storms of conflicting passions and opinions
And sleep away our years in contented hibernation.

Robert Black

Neighbourhood Watch

Changing channels on my television screen
I accidentally look through instead of look at
And see someone familiar there... is he local?
A faraway friend from some heavenly oasis,
Another virtual visitor to be cut out and pasted 
Into my own private holiday hideaway village.

Then one day normal service was interrupted
When one of them stopped and looked at me...
And waited... that isn't supposed to happen!?
But there we were, ‘neath a high noon sky
Staring at one another... awkwardly itching...
Whatever happened to the art of conversation?

Robert Black


A Church Visit

A long steep narrow road led up to the church
placed grandiosely at the top of this hilly town.
Put the car in first gear and hoped I didn't had
to stop. Half way up a funeral procession came
walking down had to stop to let them pass.

Now I couldn't get the car in gear and began
rolling back faster and faster scattering mourners
like brown leaves caught in a sudden gush.
At the bottom the road ended in a ski jump and
off the ramp the car went.80 metres and people 
applauded, but the wheels came off so our 
historic jump was disallowed.

With we, I mean the ghost who has lived in 
the back of the car for 32 years he, for it is a he, 
sings lieder when we are alone, he isn't good
for anything except appearing unseen and not 
too good at that either I can see him at night 
when passing cars lit up the back seat. He looks
remarkable like me perhaps a bit slimmer, who 
has heard of a fat ghost. 

I've bought an automat car now the ghost likes 
it too it has a softer suspension, yesterday we 
drove up the steep hill again to visit the church,
it was closed the padre had left a note telling
us that he gone out for his lunch. 

Jan O Hansen

Winter Wonder Land

I love the Nordic winter landscape 
on sunny day when sitting in a train
eating a prawn sandwich looking out 
seeing frozen lakes and white forests 
gliding by. Once a train broke down 
and stopped in the middle of a snow 
desert, frost came creping in cooling
hearts and lungs my hands, petrified 
autumn leaves and I became a hobbit 
in my seat. Just as frost was to claim 
its first victim the train started up and 
radiator heat chased winter out.

Jan O Hansen


We began school sixty years ago it seem such
a long time yet it isn't a blink of god's eye and
it was only yesterday. We fought, had secrets
now long forgotten and swore friendship for
all time. And then we parted.

They are all extraordinary men from poverty 
they rose to become architects, doctors, lawyers
businessmen and sea captains and they looked 
what they had become solid middleclass Volvo
driving citizen of a prosperous little country.

Now we met at the steps of the old school had
our picture taken and tonight, a gala dinner. 
I lived abroad had achieved nothing, a misfit 
they would see me a loser and patronize me.
In panic I took the first plane back to Iberia. 

Jan O Hansen

The Sunday Walk

Sunday afternoon rain has stopped 
no one about except for a few stray 
dogs and a cat that hurriedly crosses
the street one dog sees the cat but is
in no mood to take chase.

This is a part of town where the day
of rest is taken seriously people sit 
indoors and are bored but valiantly 
rest except for the house wife who
has to cook the Sunday roast.

It's good to walk on empty roads, 
to get rid of lethargy caused by 
sitting still too long, now jubilant 
the joy of being alive, I almost jog 
feel like singing a freedom song.

A patrol car drives slowly passed 
the two occupants stare at me, they 
look Sunday bored better not wave
this is a posh part of town and they 
may be spoiling for a fight.

"Get your dog off my garden, bum" 
someone shouts a stray has must 
followed me. "It isn't mine, asshole" 
More words and the patrol car is back 
its occupants are no longer bored. 

Jan O Hansen

A murderess

A killer's soft hands 
caress my face after 
picking roses in her 
scented garden.

Oblivious of plants 
agony she puts them 
in a vase where they 
slowly die of dread.

Her manicured nails 
are bloods red, but on 
the back of her hands 
ageing has begun. 

Jan O Hansen

The Entertainer

I wish I could play the guitar and sing 
folk songs in a bar and get paid for my
efforts. I do when in good mood recite 
poetry in my local bar but my modest 
voice is drowned by drinkers clamour. 
If I shout above their screams for help
To find a way out of the domestic trap, 
the hell called home life, the barman 
comes with his baseball bat and throws
me out as derisive laughter rings in my 
ears; a sound that reminds me of school, 
you're late again.dunce, you'll have 
to do better if you're going to make it. 
Make what? When I ask evasive eyes
flutter about seeing everything but me.

Jan O Hansen

The Mountain

The snows of Kilimanjaro has thawed some
since Hemingway saw the mountain and 
left the stage, the snow is no longer pristine
and the senses of wonder and adventure have
paled. The time of the white adventurers are 
over they are just another minority struggling 
to be heard in the clamour of cultures, where 
the most banal objects are worshipped as 
something that tells individuals, in racial groups, 
that they are proudly different from others.
Hemingway knew this when he wrote about 
The existentialism of the loner who sought his
own culture and fought his private demons.
When he sensed that he had no more to say
he went out on the veranda and shot himself 

Jan O Hansen

Gun Culture

He has a gun and walks tall down and
proud in the inner city streets, the slum, 
the jungle where he lives.

The gun makes him feel invincible, he's 
a man and he will defend his imagined 
turf till death. Die young look beautiful 
but first have it all before you go.

Incurable romantic in his easy brutality 
a young face too rots and becomes soil
mothers cry their pain suffered to no avail
and the sun sets on bitter minds.

He will not let the gun go for without it 
he isn't a man that walks proudly down 
the street of a short life.

Jan O Hansen


Man Ordinaire

He is the cannon fodder
In the game of life
Inherently disposable
Always anonymous
Indirectly referenced
As in 'bring a friend'

One of the crowd
An extra in a movie
With no distinguishing features
Never singled out
Unless fortuitously as
'the unknown soldier'

A unit in the mass of humanity
Known pityingly as
'the starving millions'
Or lost in some natural disaster
Never named
Unmourned by all

And yet
Like the grains of sand
Which make up the beach
There would be no humanity
Without him
'Man Ordinaire'

david burns

White Lady = Black Queen

With mental masturbation he unlocks the chains, not made of daisies,
To unleash the brutality of his f*ck words and phrases.
His hooded lids conceal everything that he denies,
And his body piercings are but part of the macabre disguise.

Don't touch me screams from every inch of his skin, even his pores,
Secrete his sweat that insulates him between his scores.
When she rides supreme, the dark spirited Queen!
The White Lady's breast from which he finds it impossible to wean.

He clings, he cries, writhing in agony, his voice piteously pleads,
But she is uncaring, she will leave all her children to bleed.
She will lock up the chains and cast him out into the morning mist,
The black hearted bitch, who one day will administer the final death fist.

The deadly fist which poleaxes the body into a thousand smithereens,
And who will care, who will remember the anonymous body on the screen?
Just those who loved him, those who hoped and those who cared,
Those whose heartfelt pleas and prayers were neither answered nor heard.

Carolina de la Cruz


Here I am, in your sweet arms
But thinking of another
A different time, a different place
A very different lover

A love that helped me stay alive
A love that wouldn't leave, or die,
A love that left me feeling whole
But still a part of something more.

Obsession seemed impending
But remained a distant threat
Possession, a potential thief
Of freedom, beckoned, yet

Mere happiness prevailed, and I
Habituated feeling high,
But, locked inside this loving space
I started looking for the door.

I could have stayed cocooned by sky
Instead, I ran for cover
So, here I am, in your sweet arms
But thinking of another.

Gayna Florence Perry

Thoughts of War

The spring came early, to my valley, this year here
were winter and spring are the best of times.
The big ship that straddles many oceans has changed
course a few degree starboards, it takes time but we can
see the emergence of a new morality, based on simple religious certainties.
Black and white, leave nuances
to painters, it's so easy to be righteous when you stop
seeing the other side as humans, it's then the killing
starts View is sinking in to us, the sick are ill because
they have lived wrongly and losers are losers because
they have no faith. We'll fill prisons where the unholy
that we can't find guilty of wrongdoing but we think
must be wicked, can rot. This new reality based on
what we know can't be so, is slowly taking root, it's
easier that way. One language, one people, one land;
a sixty five year old echo thunders in my ears and in
my secret glade bluebells toll.

Jan Oskar Hansen


The Road To The Monastery

On the roadside near the ruined monastery
with its leaking roof and a library full of rotting
books where you in early mornings can hear
chanting monks, it used to be a busy place in
the days when poverty and the church held
a stranglehold and kept people in ignorance, in
those days it wasn't too bad to be a monk one
was always sure of a meal, wine and a place to
sleep in exchange for praising the lord several
time a day; a rabbit sat looking as it had seen
a ghost. Looked into its shiny eyes they told me
nothing and I wondered if rabbits are sentient
all I could see in its eyes were the clear sky and
drifting clouds. Near I could hear the clamour
of the village's dogs they often follow me about,
seeing the rabbit they tore into it and ripped it
asunder. Happy dogs wagging tails followed to
the monastery, but the massive wall that cast
a long dark shadow made them fearful and quiet.
It was cold near the wall that was dark and damp
and tried to absorb me, needing sustenance for
its long, slow demise. Quickly we walked away
happy dogs and wagging tails.

Jan Oskar Hansen

Red Ice

Floes on the east coast of Canada are red now,
mass slaughter of 12 days old seal puppies.
It is, however, nice to know they die instantly
when clubbed. No doubt female wearers of
baby seal coats will know that and not feeling
guilty when parading this status symbol to posh
parties, or is it the women that are status symbol
to wealthy men? It can be said: what else are
newborn bundles of fur for? They only grow up
get to be fat seals that steal our dwindling stocks
of fish.

Jan Oskar Hansen

To Sonia

There is a gloom in the house now
that the music has gone. Outside
the light is electric clear but there
is no laughter in the air now that
my only Daughter has flown back
to her mother. We, her mother and
I, are totally unfit to live together
yet we made this child of sun and
laughter, a beam of light into our
melancholic lives. When I pick my
daughter up at the airport, I truly
believe in miracles because I have
won the biggest prize. her love.

Jan Oskar Hansen

The Polar Bear

The polar bear is a nuisance in Alaska
they get in the way of oil explorer and
kill seals especially white furry baby
seals. It also raids rubbish dumps near
settlements and kill dogs. The time for
these animals is over, they belong, as
the Indian Elephant now that farmers
have tractors, to a zoo and history.
When animals are no longer useful or
get in the way of progress they have
to go to say they have the same right as
us to be here is sentimental nonsense
they have no hands and can't drive cars.

Jan Oskar Hansen

The Lost Soldier

Little miss England giving birth in jail deserted and
loathed by the righteous who cannot see that her
silly crime of mocking prisoners of an illegal war
was nothing compared to those who give orders to
start the destruction of a society not of their liking,
citing democracy and freedom which on their lips
sounds like a curse, when we know it was for power
and oil. Little miss England it is so easy to dislike
a poor powerless person like you. Behaved badly you
not the way a girl should, you looked so boyishly
sweet and having left the poverty struck trailer park
you came from showed you were willing to get out
and do something with your life and it's not too late.
Clipped wings eventually grow back so soar high
this time play their game and win.

Jan Oskar Hansen

The Island From Outer Space

Going up the escalator I saw her in front of me, a girl
From another galaxy, she wore a tight fitting suit of gold looking like a
ray of light loosened from the sun.
This being London where people protect themselves
with mile wide sheets of ice and avoid eye contact less
they are drunk then they eye contact so much that they
end up fighting calling each other poofers, I was
The only one who noticed her? Followed her to Hyde
park where people, mostly men, are allowed to stand
on soapboxes and talk nonsense to show what a fine
democratic nation it is. She walked into a brown pond
that suddenly a golden shine, drunks on park benches
looked up but as usual clouds where murky. A flash of
light and she was gone. Stopped a passer by: "Did you
see that? He stepped aside and looked another way and
his sheet of ice froze my lips to pale blue silence. That's
why I took no notice of the man in raincoat that came
Storming out from behind a tree exposing his modest self, desperate to break
the ice to be heard and seen, hear where people only seek eye contact when

Jan Oskar Hansen