the visitor (for LCL)

when my doorbell rang
my face broke out in a smile
cause I knew it was my friend
whom I’d not seen in awhile

Bryan Ferry was spot on:
love is the drug
so I met her with open arms
Covid be damned – I gave her a hug

into the lounge we went
so she could have a wee rest
there I read her a speech I’d written
for the next BLM protest

then, armed with iced tea
& the usual bottle of wine
we moved into the garden’s
warm afternoon sunshine

the morning rain had vanished
an unexpected treat
joyously we bared our skin
to the early evening heat

together in the garden
we spoke of everything
retaining optimism
for what the future might bring

a girl who’s entered womanhood
a woman near the end of her life
both unmindful of race or class
making plans for a world with no strife

copyright © 2020 KPM

only my window box is winning

take a moment to observe
the flowers in my window box
the way they hold each other up
though each plant has had hard knocks

each bloom, each plant is separate
growing at a different rate
yet somehow they coexist
ain’t that lovely? I think it’s great

beautiful, the way they mingle
the way they manage to get along
in such a tiny, defined space
they sing a harmonious, scented song

look at the flowers in my box
free from hatred, immune to greed
sunshine, water, a little love
‘n they’re happy – that’s all they need

the flowers in my window box
they all grew from a tiny seed
if only mankind were more like them
realising we’re all part of the same breed

we could kill off all the bad stuff
truly make a new beginning
sadly, assholes are in power
only my window box is winning

copyright © 2020 KPM

only my window box is winning

 

morning parade

my neighbour leads the way
bang on at 10 past 8
pack on back, bag in hand
yeah, I can relate

old dude in an indy ref cap
is next to walk down the hill
winds tuggin’ at his beard
fixin’ a rolly-up with neat skill

there’s a woman with a child
the bairn’s unsteady on her feet
their hands are linked together
as they traverse the cobblestone street

the skinny kid walks his bike
he sports a Just Eat uniform
grey clouds hover overhead
for his sake, I hope it don’t storm

on the other side of the street
an old woman walks up the hill
Aldi’s bag clasped to her chest
from the top some celery stalks spill

another day of hoping
I’ll get that for which I’ve prayed
wrapped in silence at my desk
watchin’ another morning parade

copyright © 2020 KPM

sometimes you gotta laugh (for Lucie)

Lucie’s eyes are luminous
as we dance to Fever the Ghost
the fly on the wall can’t tell
which of us is laughing the most

both our eyes grow serious
as we speak of the state of things
voices pained & indignant
sunlight flashing off earrings

Lucie’s eyes are delighted as
she plays for me a Brazilian song
“do you really like it?
“yes I do” legs dancin’ tanned & strong

both our eyes are shining
sippin’ Sauvignon with dinner
as we jokingly agree
lockdown’s not made us any thinner

Lucie’s eyes are loving
music fills the smoky air
we dance in homage to us
laughing freely, without care

copyright © 2020 KPM

an army of angels

they’re coming:
every day their numbers swell
warriors to guard the faithful
from this living hell

carefully bred
specially selected
moving among the living
undetected

memories of love
are their calling card
we welcome them
in these times so hard

a father, a husband
his sister, her brother
a stranger’s child
a devoted mother

they’re coming:
the numbers continue to grow
an army of angels
with hope & blessings to bestow

copyright © 2020 KPM

expiration date

I know, I know:
people die
& we may not always understand
WHY
for me
personally
I’ve never liked saying
GOODBYE
so this is why I weep
it’s the reason that I
CRY

I know:
one day
my time here will
EXPIRE
for me
personally
much of life has been
DIRE
yet I have the hope of heaven
opposed to
HELLFIRE

I know, I know:
that one day
my heart will
MEND
& for me
personally
I must learn how to
BEND
so with faith I’ll pray
for this pandemic’s
END

copyright © 2020 KPM

get a grip

you gotta get a grip, girl
it’s folks you can’t let down
people look to you for hope
in your fear you cannot drown

put your face out there
let them see you smile
you never know who might need it,
lockdown’s gonna last awhile

buck up, baby girl
your peeps on you
they know the words you speak (or write)
is on the real & always true

you gotta hang in there
your parents watch you from above
you must get through each day
for all those folks you love

so get a grip, my love
our world leaders may be bumbling
all the folks you love are safe
so be grateful & stop your grumbling

copyright © 2020 KPM

the many faces of love

alone on Saturday night behind locked doors
I drink too much wine & pace the floors
“How long?” I wonder, “Can this nightmare last?”
I’m sure it’s a question that many have asked
laptop, mobile & tablet aligned on the table
I seek companionship as best I’m able

Chelle’s driving, on her way to the liquor store
all buckled up & laughing that she needs “wine ‘n more!”
I tilt my wine glass in a toast to the face on the screen
while we discuss the merits of what goes best with which cuisine
she pulls her shiny car into the parking bay
“Stay safe” we tell each other before our images melt away

my sister Kim is lying down, sleeping so peacefully
I feel bad that I’ve awakened her just to talk to me
now labelled as “essential”, each day my sister goes to work
while I putter in my garden feeling like a useless jerk
Kim is my heart, mother to my nephew & beautiful nieces
her beloved face, her voice, keep me from falling to pieces

finding Tora free at home is a wonderful surprise
love dwells in her face – hope shines in her eyes
my friend ‘n colleague from those memorable Ursuline years
sunny days spent in the quad sharing laughter, dreams & tears
seeing her, talking to her is always so much fun
“You were right, Kath,” she jokes, “We shoulda run.”

Sharon’s video call is welcome though unexpected
her face ‘n Jourdy’s smile keep me from feeling dejected
besties for 58 years, longer than some folks’ve been married
understanding each other, anchored by love that’s unvaried
always calm, she reassures me this state of affairs will end
I blow kisses, to my surrogate child & my oldest friend

the second bottle is almost empty – the last few sips I drain
tidying up I dream of the future, when I can get on a plane
over an ocean and through the heavens I will happily soar
to the land of my youth to hug my family & friends once more
the hour is late now, so I climb into my bed
with many faces of love dancing through my head

copyright © 2020 KPM

everything she needs

she’s so not bothered
by the arthritis in her knee
she’s happy with her brand new glasses
cuz that means she can see

pretty fish swim in their tank
lots of meat in the freezer
she worries not about grey hair
it don’t make her an old geezer

her favourite foods are in the fridge
there’s a roof over her head
& when she wants to sleep at night
she’s got a big warm bed

she’s got a job she likes
that helps to pay the bills
& the blessing of free health care
to take care of any ills

can’t forget that lovely garden
with its sweet-smelling flowers
here she finds her greatest peace
digging & weeding for hours

does she miss her family?
hell yeah – they were there first
sometimes she misses them so much
she fears her heart will burst

but there are many folk who love her
she thinks this every day
folks whose smiles hold her up
when grief wants to stay

when her tears fall,
when there’s nightmares,
when heart breaks & bleeds,
her mother’s memory reminds her
that she has everything she needs

copyright © 2019 KPM

conviction

the demons return
when the room is pitch-black
but she’s stronger now:
well-equipped to fight back
she’ll not let their negativity
win the day
her feet are firmly planted
her resolve will not sway

she’s made friends with Hypnos
she dances in her dreams
blithely side-steppin’
away from the demons’ screams
ogres & devils
do battle for her soul
as she recedes from the reach
of Charon’s barge pole

copyright © 2017 KPM