Facsimile – dVerse Poetics


I’m not as resilient as I used to think

I am hollowed out and my mouth

is emptied when I most need to speak.

Fear steals my words and amplifies my thoughts –

the worst-case scenarios

the shadows

the insecurities

the ghosts

they haunt me

when all I want to do is

express how I feel

share my emotions

let you know me.

Be me.

Now that, that all silences me.

I’m no longer a woman

I’m the little girl waiting at the window

for someone

who never comes.

I put on a brave face

hid behind my curtain of unruly hair

and pretended everything was fine.

Who was I fooling?

I never had a poker face

I never will.

Nothing changes so very much.

Even if the damn words won’t come out

they’re all there

waiting to be freed

if I could only let them.

I’m silenced by the distant past

catching up and tripping me.

And I’m never prepared.

Never prepared.

I can’t unravel it on my own. Will you help me?

Here’s my entry into this week’s dVerse Poetics, hosted by the lovely Abhra who is, sadly, saying goodbye as one of the trusty and dedicated barkeeps at our wonderful bar. Sometimes, you just have to recognise when it’s time to move on.

The theme this week is unintended farewells. I did struggle with this a bit (and only partially because WordPress had a bit of a melt-down yesterday), since I didn’t want to hark back directly to the sudden and unexpected loss of my dad, which many of you have read about.

My entry is more to do with the consequences of that, and a few other chicanes in the road that have been part of my life over the past few years. I do feel as if I’m no longer the person I used to be. Sometimes, it’s bloody hard, sometimes, I see glimmers of someone else far more positive and creative than I was. It’s a confusing mess, but at least it’s life!

Please do head on over to the blog and this week’s Poetics to read more poety goodness – and to wish Abhra well, of course!.




The weather lingers in these parts. The mountains tower over our village as it hunkers down, clinging to the foothills. In autumn, when the air is dank and the sodden leaves lie on the ground like dead fish stranded after high tide, mists loiter below the craggy peaks. If you are a Rare One like me, you venture out from the safety of the low-slung houses and meandering lanes, and haul yourself up by your fingertips to the granite summits. You pierce the mists like a bodkin through hessian and it is as if you have ascended to the heavens. If you stay below, you remain buried in the bowels of the earth. All light is stolen, all is shadow. But it is all you know, and so you stay.

Then, there are the Nights of Anger. Most hide their heads, mouse-dormant, most warn their children not to venture outside. For the white-hot shards that splinter the sky, the roaring air that shakes the centre of the earth as if it is but a child’s plaything, they do not leave our small world willingly. They are trapped by those dark peaks raised heavenwards, pointing to other-worldly forms of justice – they are subjecting us to the timpani of the gods and hell’s illumination to teach us all an unknowable lesson.

Some elders claim that long ago, a heinous crime tore the guts from the village. Others believe that the storms are a warning of devilry to come. All agree that something is foul in this valley, and that the village is the rotting carcass. The air is rancid butter, cloying and oily. I alone have stood above the clouds as the air borne battle rages. I have tasted the electricity, have felt the roiling air pummel my flesh. I alone know the truth of this land, and it is in my gift to rip it asunder. Nature’s storm clouds have nothing on me. Nothing.

Dark harvest



I put tulips under all the pillows, and then I set fire to the house.

You see, they hadn’t believed me when I said I would wreak my revenge. Dr Fernandez just told me I was attention-seeking and waved his hand at me in that Spanish way of his, dismissing me from his rooms like a naughty child. In fact, that’s exactly what he said I was ‘”A reediculous niña”‘ as he pushed me out into the reception area so hard that I tripped over that damned stupid rug and ended up sprawled on the floor, nose pressed against his receptionist’s Malono Blahnik’s. She is paid far too much.

Anyway, on the following Friday, we packed our bags and planned our escape. When I say ‘we’, I mean me and Vincent, my loyal English Bull Terrier and only friend. And when I say ‘planned’, well, that’s a rather grand description for chucking my holdall in the boot and gunning the poor old Morris Minor’s engine to within an inch of its life. Vincent doesn’t like the car, pretty much because there’s a hole in the passenger seat’s footwell, so if you stare at it too long, the rushing tarmac makes you feel sick. Or, makes you sick, in Vincent’s case. He’s since learned to hunker down on the back seat and close his eyes, pretty much.

You see, I’d never have done that thing with the tulips if it wasn’t for Fred. I’ll never forget the time that he went to the garden centre and never came back. Seventeen, I was. He was Mum’s new bloke, really nice and all, not like some of the other men she’d hooked up with since Dad high-tailed it to Spain – trouble with the Vice Squad, so Mum told me. ‘”Just off to Greengage’s!”‘ Fred had sung out as he stepped out the front door, and I knew he’d come back with those beautiful purple tulips that he knew I loved. I’d almost hugged myself with the pleasure of it all. It was like having a new dad all over again.

Only, he didn’t come back. It was like he’d been wiped off the face of the earth.

But Mum didn’t seem all that surprised, or even bothered.

And then, quick as you like, Nigel moved in. Barely out of his teens and a cocky so-and-so. Fancied himself. And unfortunately, me as well.

No damned way.

Shame about the house though.