The Sunday Whirl ~ #Wordle 490 #Poetry

I try to run right through the storm
To hide. I am a failure, a fraud
I have been too proud
Thinking myself smarter than the rest
I am brought low by the company I keep
I do not speak up, to say how I feel
I am craven, a coward in disguise
I have not joined in the treason they speak of
Yet I am complicit as I sit and listen to their plans
In the end, their words of sedition do not excite me
I do not have the energy for rebellion
There is no branch for me to hang my hat on…

© Anita Dawes 2021

Games… #Poetry

Image by Prettysleepy from Pixabay

Games…

here I am in my trusty silver steed
My favourite four-legged friend sitting beside me
I tip my top hat to a lady passing
I have thrown a four, stopping before chance
I can hear the trains at Fenchurch street
Speeding, I narrowly miss a spell in jail
I would have lost the chance to collect two hundred
The wait to get out of jail would be too long
I continue my journey through Regent Street
One of my favourite places to stop and look around
I can see hotels being built
People having sold their houses, now thinking big
In the distance, Mayfair, one of the most lucrative places
To build your first million…

© anita dawes 2020

What is wrong with this picture?

I had gone down to the bottom of our garden (sorry, our jungle) and was on my hands and knees, trying to remove the mystery plant (see link) from our sadly overgrown patio.

It turned out to have exceptionally long tap roots which I didn’t want to break, so I hardly noticed when Anita walked up to me.

” What’s wrong with this picture, Jaye?”

I looked up to see what she was on about. She was staring at the trees behind me. I followed her gaze and once my brain engaged, I couldn’t make out what was missing. What wasn’t I seeing?

Normally, there is a thick, almost impenetrable stand of trees at the end of our garden, but now, there was a rather large gap.

I could see straight through to the houses behind.

“what the…”

“I think someone has stolen a tree…”

“Don’t be daft. Who would steal it… and how?”

“God knows, but it’s not there, is it. So where in the blue blazes has it gone?”

I managed to persuade my knees to stand up and we made our way past the other trees, coming up to the gap from the other side.

“Bloody hell!”

From this angle we could see that the tree wasn’t missing. It had simply become weary of standing upright and had slid sideways, lying almost horizontal.

The base of the tree had rotted, and the recent strong winds had done the rest.

Now, I still do most of my gardening stunts, but this tree was at least ten feet tall, so I didn’t fancy my chances. 

So I reported it to the landlord and passed the problem on to them…

Here’s hoping everyone has a super dooper weekend!

Can Anyone Tell Me…

what this is?

Image by Jaye Marie

Whatever this is, it is 10″ wide and growing in our sadly neglected and overgrown with weeds patio. I suspect the birds have gifted it to us, for I have never seen anything like it in any garden.

I will be using a weedkiller to clear the weeds before repairing the stone work, but loathe to spray any on whatever this is so will try to relocate it elsewhere.

Unless you know different, of course…

#Writephoto ~ Tokens

Thursday photo prompt: Tokens #writephoto

Image by scvincent.com

For visually challenged writers, the image shows a feather, an autumn leaf and two bright red berries or beads, left amongst the stones and plants by a stone that looks like a head with jewelled eyes…

There’s a kind of déjà vu
a message going on here
First Jaye calls me into the office
to see one of our followers
Beautiful pictures of an eagle
Who while flying above his head?
dropped a flight feather

Image by Tofino Photography. WordPress.com

Next day, Jaye noticed a feather
Had dropped into one of her bonsai trees
During the high wind we were having
To me, it looked like an arrow or a dart

Image by Jaye Marie

Now, this prompt from Sue, making it the third time
Which is said to be a meaningful coincidence
I don’t understand the message here
Or what it might mean
But I digress. Back to the third feather
It could mean all sorts
Icarus could have flown over
Mercury too, may have lost a feather from his boot
This seems to be a different meaning
The head with the dark eyes looks like an owl
Yet behind that, I see a tiny face in the leaves
Whose tiny turned down mouth
and dark sad eyes, gives him a perplexed look
Could be the message is one of sadness
The summer is over, berries, autumn leaves have fallen
his sadness is not for the loss of summer
I think the meaning more dire, a warning
The kind that most of us ignore,
brush aside as superstition
This kind of thing drives me mad
I need to know, to understand
There is so much I never find the answer to
I guess I’m not the only one…

©anitadawes 2020

Progress Report! (Or how I learned to love my work again!)

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BABY STEPS!

 

I have been an editor/proof-reader for years and always considered myself reasonably good at my job. I never had any complaints, which is my benchmark for how good you really are. In fact, several Literary Agents complimented me on the quality of our submissions.

English was always my favourite subject and I read a lot of books, but never once considered being a writer. I was far too busy managing Anita’s books, back in the day when manuscripts had to be submitted to agents and publishers in a very particular fashion.

Over the years, we received stacks of very encouraging and favourable letters from both agents and publishers alike, almost leading to publication a couple of times but sadly, despite almost being good enough, Anita was never published.

This might have been why I didn’t think of being a writer, after all, I knew better than most, just how bloody hard it was. But eventually, my muse arrived. This was just after the Kindle phenomena took off. Suddenly, everyone could publish their books on Amazon, and it was supposed to be so easy, anyone could do it.

I have to say, in fairness to all the wonderful writers out there, I did find it very hard to write a full-length book. 70.000 words seemed an impossible target, and I doubted my capabilities every step of the way. That first book taught me so much about plot and dialogue, character arcs and subplots, even though it made my head spin. The day I finished Nine Lives, a sense of achievement crept over me as I realised I had become a writer!

That was in 2014, and I went on to write two more thrillers after that. Most of you will know the fun I have had finding the right covers for my books, but I didn’t worry about the content at all. After all, I checked them for spelling errors and I had my editor head on, so they had to be fine.

Or so I thought.

What happened to make me doubt myself?

I had written a memoir/novella about my fight with breast cancer and published it on Amazon. It received one review that commented on how short it was, and when I took a long hard look at it, I had to agree. Not only was it far too short, it could be a lot better. That was when I knew I would have to check my other books too.

I read Nine Lives again and was shocked at the state of it. Where was all the brilliant writing, the competent editor, the jaw-dropping prose? To say I was disappointed would be putting it mildly, I wanted to crawl away and die. For nearly a week, I battled with unpublishing my books and throwing them away, for the thought of rewriting them seemed an impossible task.

Gradually, common sense prevailed. They were my babies, I was an editor, I could fix this.

One thought kept me going. If I can now recognise the faults in my writing, does that mean I have improved over the years? I am pretty sure I have, for I am looking at my work with a totally different mindset. Most of what I see is amateur, almost childish. There were so many repeated and wimpy words and adjectives by the bucket load. It probably would have been easier to start afresh, but I am nothing if not stubborn, so I have tried to improve all three books, or die trying! They might be the only thing I leave this world to remember me by!

 

Did you spot the Hidden Message?

lightning.jpg

 

As I sit in front of my pc

Thunder and lightning

try to break through my window

A symphony to the anger of the world

A wake-up call, HELLO from the universe

Thunder cracking TO the beat of my heart

ALL my thoughts spark, arcing

Whispered thoughts from a few of OUR FOLLOWERS,

This lifted the day, the dark mood that came over me

Vanished. I HAVE time for lunch, have a cup of coffee

I could end up having A GOOD DAY!

©anitadawes 2020

Did you spot the Hidden Message?

“Hello to all our followers, have a good day!”

Bcgrpknni

P.S.  Audrey Driscoll almost made it with “I hope you did have a good day!”

John Howell said “Comments from followers can alter the day from bad to good…”

So, where were the rest of you?

#TheSundayWhirl ~ Wordle 445

 

I will take it, make it mine

Will tomorrow be as good as yesterday?

The storyteller began his tale

On his neck hung a chain

With a bright jewel

Which held the mystery

So he said.

I ask him about it

Truly, I wanted it

I felt like Gollum.

He winked at me

It’s but a wee thing

Nothing special.

This angered me

which felt like a small

stone growing inside me

I knew I would do anything

to have it

Watching as it changed colour

from blue to green then blue again

It flickered, as if a shifting light

lay behind it

It will be mine.

His story ended with a question

Where does magic come from?

From the jewel around your neck

I thought.

The heat of the day was fading

Dark tendrils of night swept across

the dark sky

Right now, my only thought

will he sleep outside

with the rest of us

Or move on like a wandering minstrel?

I thought him sly

Neither minstrel nor storyteller

He lay his cloak on the ground

as we did

Faking sleep I’m sure.

I kept one eye on him

When time passed

I crept closer

Lay awhile listening

to his breathing

I couldn’t tell if sleep had taken him.

Sly as a fox, I slid my hand beneath his collar

Trying to undo the clasp, he woke

I slammed my fist into his face

He lay quiet.

The jewel and I took off

Not turning to see who I might have woken

I ran deep into the woods before stopping

To look at my prize

Heart beating, legs shaking,

I slumped beneath a giant oak tree

Glad of its support against my back

Opening my hand, the jewel shone

Like the eye of God

Now all I need is for the magic to start…

 

©anitadawes 2020

I Tried Something New… #Poetry

 

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Image by Sasin Tipchai from Pixabay

 

                                      I Tried Something New…

                                           One day I will make it to the top

                                           Who is there to tell me no? He

                                            Knows where I hide

                                            My past I do not want spoken

                                            Secrets that may take my life

                                            Can I run, find shelter, stay hidden?

                                           Tell no one about my dark side

                                            My life has been so wrong

                                           Stories have been whispered, made up…

                                                               ©anitadawes 2020