Tagged: poetry

Jan 02


It doesn’t cost much.
It won’t last long.
Lost in a drawer for years,
It might not even light.

But it could be enough,
To spark a flame,
To light up the darkness,
To burn the healing oil.

So strike the match,
Rub the sticks,
Flick the switch,
Ignite an inferno.


Nov 30

Hard Wired

Cut the head off a flower, and it will grow back.
Tear a hole in the ozone, and it can close up.
Graze your skin, and it will knit itself together.

Healing is hard wired into the fabric of the universe.
So it is hard wired in you too.


Nov 02

Shalom / Fragmented


Is there anything more attractive,
Than a person fully alive?
Completely free.
Totally whole.

The one who has done the work,
Overcome adversity, beat the odds,
Risen from the ashes.

Healing is contagious.
It catches, ripples, sparks,
Lighting fires that lead the way to Shalom.

This is what it means to live your best life,
Not to be free of hardship,
But to be travelling the path to wholeness,
Taking others with you.


Is there anything less attractive,
Than a person barely alive?
Completely bound.
Totally fragmented.

The one who refuses to do the work,
Beaten by adversity, obeying the odds,
Choked by the ashes.

Disease can be contagious.
It catches, spreads, sparks,
Lighting fires that destroy the path to Shalom.

This is what it means to miss your best life,
To be bitter about your hardship,
To walk away from the path to wholeness,
Taking others with you.


Jul 02

Screwed Up

I said,
It’s like a screwed up ball of paper.
Crinkled, creased, damaged and torn.
If you unfurled it, flattened it, ironed it.
It would still bear the marks of the damage.
It would still be unusable, irreparable, defective.
It would be better to find a new blank page,
To begin again.

She said,
I prefer a screwed up piece of paper to a blank page.
Every line tells a story, every tear honours a scar.
Every crease maps a journey, every mark speaks a truth.
A blank page is uninteresting, without form or pattern.
Voiceless, shapeless, plain.
Screwed up paper shows it can be reformed, reshaped, remade.
You can still be screwed up, and begin again.


May 02

Who’s That Lady?

A poem written in memory of my Grandmother, and read out at her funeral.

Another Christmas Day came,
This one not the same.
We didn’t want you alone in the old people’s home,
So we gathered all together at my brother’s house
And you sat in the corner as quiet as a mouse.

By then dementia was doing its thing
You’d point and say “who’s that? There, him!”
“Do you know that lady? Look there’s a baby!”
The long-term memories you seemed to retain,
But shorter term things were like treasure mislaid.

So I knew what was coming as I sat by your side,
You asked “who’s that lady?” I replied, “Gran that’s my wife”.
Your face filled with shock,
Eyes locked, jaw dropped.
You laughed “don’t be silly, she’s not, you what?!”

I began to worry you’d reject not accept me,
Or worse still rebuke and correct me.
Or say being gay just wasn’t right in your day,
Despite years ago telling me you thought it was ok.
Instead you took my hand as your eyes filled with love,
And said ‘as long as you’re happy dear, well that’s enough’.

Relief flooded through me, the conversation was done,
Christmas resumed with food, presents and fun.
I didn’t know minutes later the same question would come,
Then every twenty minutes till the day was done.
I’ve never come out so many times in one day,
I should’ve worn a t-shirt saying REMEMBER I’M GAY!

So now as it’s time to say goodbye,
I think often of that Christmas gone by.
How that moment is perfection in its reflection of you.
Your unedited acceptance of the person I am,
I won’t ever forget it, or you, lovely Gran.


Nov 02

The Same Fire

The same fire that inspires me
To burn bright
To change lives
To not lose sight
To shine like a light

Is the same fire that requires me
To stop before burning up
To not be too hot to touch
To light up the sky but not too much
To resist the self-destruct

How can fire be held in a human heart,
Without breaking it apart?


Oct 02

Let Me Be Like Autumn

Let me be like Autumn leaves
Born from mighty oaks.
Rooted in the unseen.
Feeding, nourishing,
Provoking growth.

Let me be like Autumn trees
Unbreakable but bendable. Dependable.
Aware of all that’s nourished me,
But able to let it go.

Let me be like Autumn leaves
Falling with grace at a gentle pace,
Unafraid to change, unafraid to leave.
Letting go, moving on.
Staying near, but in a new place.

Let me be like Autumn trees
Formed from the layers of before.
Every season shaping and making me,
Good and bad, sun and storm,
I embrace it all.


Aug 02

The Simple Fact

It’s a sitting back,
Shoulders relaxed,
Lungs contract at the simple fact…

You have been with me each day that is done,
And you will be with me each day that will come.


Jun 02

What If?

What if I didn’t have to close my eyes
To see the things I want to see.
What if they were right in front of me.
What if I could begin to believe
What if I could feel my lungs breathe
What if I let my heart dream.

What if things turned out better than expected
Profits higher than projected
Application accepted
Contingency plans rejected.

What if everything broken could be reconnected
What if everyone in danger could be protected
what if everything dead could be resurrected.

What if…


Jun 22

Youthwork Summit 2015

I recently had the privilege of speaking at the Youthwork Summit on Re:verse – a spoken word poetry project for young people I run. Here’s my talk, with two of our young poets giving some amazing performances…