Absent

Just a quick note to let you know that I will be taking a short break. We are off in our motorhome for a week, for a change of scenery. With things being a bit uncertain I’m not sure if we will find a decent Wi-Fi connection so will not be posting here.

Now lockdown has eased a bit we need to go to check on our still unsold boat, which we haven’t visited for over 6 months – it will be in need of a good clean. We’re hoping that with things easing up it will begin to rekindle people’s interest in buying a boat!

Then, on the way home we are stopping off for a couple of days to cycle an interesting looking trail on our tandem now that campsites are beginning to open up, all-be-it with certain restrictions. I will probably write a post about the ride on our return. One of the advantages of motorhomes is that we can be self-sufficient and easily socially distance without too much inconvenience.

See you again next week.

Uplift

Welcome
sun, shine
on me, uplift
my spirit, bring me
cheer.

* * * * * * * * * * * *
I know many of you admired the poetry of Cynthia Jobin, who blogged as Little Old Lady Who and who sadly passed away at the end of 2016. This Elfje was inspired by her uplifting poem ‘The Way the Sun’, which you will find in her posthumous poetry collection ‘Song of Paper’, published in 2018 by Bennison Books (www.bennisonbooks.com) and available from Amazon. I am delighted that two Elfje by Cynthia are also included in my book ‘Simply Elfje’, again available from Amazon, or direct from me via my Silverburn Publishing website.

In a previous post (here) I mentioned that my poetry group are sharing poems via email while we cannot meet face to face. Cynthia’s poem ‘The Way the Sun’ was my contribution to this week’s selection.

Bani Adam

I have only recently discovered the Persian poet Saadi Shirazi, having come across the quotation I am sharing today and which seems so apt for modern times. Saadi lived from 1210 to around 1291 or 92 and is acknowledged for his wisdom. Like Shakespeare, he is often quoted without knowing where the quotation comes from! He is best known for his two major works; Bustan (The Orchard) which is in verse and Gulistan (The Rose Garden) which is a mixture of prose and short poems. The following quote is from Bani Adam which is part of the Gulistan.

“Human beings are members of a whole,
In creation of one essence and soul.
If one member is afflicted with pain,
Other members uneasy will remain.
If you have no sympathy for human pain,
The name of human you cannot retain.”

(Saadi)

There have been many translation of this quotation. The above is by A. Hart Edwards

Preserving

Making a batch of cherry jam.
Saving some fruit for a pie tomorrow.
Freezing the surplus for jam in the winter.
Preserving Mother Nature’s bounty.

Unpredictable

Unpredictable.
Heavy showers,
short sunny spells.
Not a day for
cycling!

Hot

A day for doing
administration, while the
sun burns hot outside.

Unwritten

Breeze
turns pages
in my notebook,
racing to an unwritten
future.

Deposed

Who’d have thought it?
A pigeon,
king of the feeders,
deposed
by a family
of marauding starlings.

To a Skylark

Sweet
trilling song.
Up on high
I spot him hovering.
Skylark.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Out on our tandem last Sunday, cycling through open countryside, I became away of bird song and recognised it as a skylark, also known in our house as ‘the never-wert bird’! I looked around and, up high over my left shoulder, eventually spotted it hovering; something of a rare sighting these days.

The skylark gained the name ‘never-wert bird’ in my childhood, aided and abetted by my father, also a poetry lover, from the poem ‘To a Skylark’ by Percy Bysshe Shelley which, as I’m sure you know, begins with the lines “Hail to thee, blithe Spirit / Bird thou never wert”.

One of my clearest memories of seeing skylarks was from when I was a primary school teacher many years ago. My classroom looked out over a fairly wide expanse of grass between our school and the associated Infant School next door. This stretch of grass was out-of-bounds for playing on and surprisingly skylarks nested there. What a delight it was for me and my class of 7-8 year olds, to see through the classroom windows, their regular comings and goings.

Needless to say ‘To a Skylark’ was my choice of poem for this weeks ’email’ session of our poetry group. We are unable to meet at the moment for obvious reasons, so instead we each email a poem via a group email to one of our members who correlates them into a pdf file for circulation to the whole group, to include those members who ‘don’t do email’. The only requirement is that the poem should preferably be uplifting and that we give reasons for our choice.

Evening

Darkening sky.
Thunder rumbles.
Rain hammers down.
Evening grows dim,
angrily early.

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