Secrets are for spies

9

 

 

 

Explore a face.

 

 

Mine reveals little.

 

This tired old mug:

fit only
to be endured.

 

Though
sometimes
my mouth
bears fruit.

 

 

Yet secrets remain.

 

I can’t help you with them.

 

 

 

Secrets
are for spies.

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

The poem above was the last piece of writing from my teens.

Your comments are always welcome! 😊

Hope everybody is well? 🙏

 

Thank you
for reading.

 

(Any art or image on the blog is mine.)


 

 

Update:

Apologies if this post is less coherent than normal.
Disorientation prevents proper concentration and editing.

I’m really struggling, presently.
The virus, mentioned before, has flared up for a third weekend running.
(Assume it’s flu, but don’t understand why symptoms keep recurring, intead of easing?)

Feeling feverish, exhausted, and in great pain.
Very difficult sitting at my computer, or focussing on words.

Though I refuse to abandon blogging.

Starting to get anxious about the current situation.

Was too poorly for much shopping, during recent weeks.
Using limited reserves.

Venturing out midweek(after five days) I found supermarkets almost stripped of food.
Never seen anything like it.
Now I can’t restock.

I’ve largely been socially isolated for almost 30 years, due to chronic health problems. Going to the shops is the only place I regularly get near others.
Yet still catch colds and flu.
Buses are full of coughing people, all year round, in England.

 


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Dream triad

Konica12520

 

 

 

 

1)    Entrance.

 

Grotesque impressions

flashed before her mind.

Forms which moved
through shadows.

“I feel faint,” she thought
“but can’t give in.”

Intuiting
cold vastness
beyond her frightened face.

From where an updraught blew.

Its source:
that entrance
like a grave.

Steps slanted down.

What passageway was this?

She found a door
yet froze.

As if held back
by clinging vines.

Or some malign narcotic
slowly weakening
her will.

 

 

 

2)   The click.

 

With sounds of falling
dim light blinked.

Then motion
overhead
came closer.

Unknown shapes.

She braced herself.

 

And heard

the click.

 

 

 

 

3)   Ivy.

 

The door had shut.

Trapped there
groping round in darkness
hands brushed ivy.

Massed leaves
meeting fingertips.

She tore a large
old spider’s web.

While fear
suffused
her heart.

 

 

It seemed
now

such
a long
time

 

 

since

 

she had been

kissed.

 

 

 

 

 

 



 

Hello everyone!

This poem dates from when I was 19.

For me, it marks a period of using poetry and music (learning guitar) against depression.
Which had marred my previous year.

 

(Art on the blog is mine. I hope you like the painting?)

Comments are always VERY welcome! 🙏

 

Thank you
for reading.

 

 


 

(PS:

The virus mentioned last week has flared up again.
Brain fog, exhaustion, and pain are making writing difficult.

But life would feel even lonelier without blogging.

Best wishes to you all. )


 

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Toward the Moon

1_Page_01

 

 

 

Life.

This intermission
of eternity.

 

Soul’s fragile wings
attempting flight.

 

Wrenched matter shapes us.

Under stars breath.

 

With black
for a colour
I cover some wounds.

When speech sounds hollow
from these lips.

And dreams dissolve
in gentle nuance
like farewell.

 

One tries to brush
such moods aside.

 

As prayer ascends
toward the Moon.

 

An ageless
murmur’s

 

Scant

sad

 

call.

 

 

 

 

 


 


 

The piece above is my first teenage poem, written at age 16.
No others survive from that year.

(Art on the blog is mine: I hope you like it?)

Comments are always VERY welcome!

Thank you for reading.

 

 


 

(PS: Am currently going down with an unknown virus.

Feeling feverish. Aching so much, even writing is painful.

Thought to keep blogging as a way of not giving in.

Being already unwell and isolated, my anxiety levels increase when new illness attacks.

I have enough food for a few days, but no support available, if things get bad.)

 

 


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At an end?

scan 16

 

(Third blogiversary post.)

 

 

From a summit
the only way leads down.

 

Starting this site, three years ago, it felt like I had a mountain to climb.

Chronically ill. Isolated.
The last of our family line.

Worried a lifetime’s creative output might be lost, once I died.

Eager to preserve some work, I blogged.

Through pain, exhaustion, vertigo, brain-fog, depression, infections, migraines,
technical ignorance, self-doubt, and bereavement.

 

Told regularity was important, I stuck to Sunday posting.
Never missed a week.

 

Yet, now I’ve reached a kind of end.

Until this point the path’s been clear:
edit, then upload, past work.

But, after 224 posts, seeing poetry and prose all published,
the future looms uncertain.

Anxiety has risen.

I fret over not being a proper blogger.
Thinking my existence too dull to write about.

 

Should I just stop?

What to do next?

 

 

Here are three basic options:

 

1) Take a break?

(Which risks resumed oblivion.
Would anybody even notice I’d gone?)

 

2) Recommence Daily Notes?

(Presently terminated at 2012.)

(My concern is, these notes turn increasingly political, from 2013.
Since politics are notoriously divisive, I fear alienating valued followers.)

 

3) Recycle forgotten items?

(During the first eight months my blog remained text only; and under-tagged.
Views were very low.)

I could update selected early pieces.
Thus keeping things active: while leaving more mental energy,
for new writing.

 

(There’s also a novel, left unfinished.)

 

 

In seven days
a choice must be made!

 

 


 

 

I am sincerely grateful for your support.

And hope you continue visiting my site.  🙏

 

Comments are always VERY welcome.

 

Thanks for reading!

 

🙂

 

 

 

(Art on the blog is mine.)

 


( anxiety / art / blog / blogging / depression / drawing / life / mental health / poetry / politics /  prose / reading / thoughts / writing )

 

Sick of blogging?

scan 2

 

 

Ever get fed up with blogging?

I do.

Sometimes during moods of unexpected intensity.

“Why continue, then?” you ask.

(Notice me discerning your thoughts? Pretty cool, eh?)

“Because I don’t have a life,” is the basic answer.
Being chronically ill reduces capacity for enjoyable activities.

“Which activities are those?” you inquire.
(My mind-reading’s on a roll, today.)

“Hmm. Let’s see.”

“Say the first thing arising.”
“Er. Maybe the second thing.”
“Why not the first?”
“It was slightly inappropriate.”
“Go ahead. After all, who cares?”
“Excuse me?”

“Face facts. Hardly anybody’s interested.
They wearied of your existential rambling months ago.
And the depressing poetry.”

“Hang on, a minute…”

“Hence you’re left talking to yourself in cyberspace.
Like a person suffering multiple personality disorder.”

“Listen, rude inner-voice doubling as imaginary interlocutor,
such disrespect for a fellow, on his own website, appears poor etiquette.
Can’t you find redeeming features?”

“There’s no compulsory optimism, I suppose.”

“OK. Now please be quiet, as I wish to address my audience.”

“Both at once? LOL!”

 

Dear Reader, do you ever get sick of blogging?

Does anything help?

 

I remember advice articles suggest ending on a question.
Though people often ignore mine.

Perhaps engagement stays low since I’m a bad writer?
Yet, no-one wants to admit that, about their work.

Except, I just did.

But, wait:
isn’t honesty a positive quality?

So, might this downbeat post negate its own negativity?

Has my failure gone meta?

Could meta-failure
form a kind of success?

 

 

(Thus, when I’m trying to think the way out,
philosophy pulls me back in.)

🤔

 

 

 

 



 

Hi all!

Attempts at spontaneous writing took a silly turn this week. 🙃
(Influence of British humour upon me, since childhood, is not easily escaped.)

Comments are always VERY welcome?

Art on the blog is mine, hope you like it?

 

Thank you for reading.

 

 


( anxiety /art / blog / depression / humor / humour / life / mental health / poetry / prose / reading / thoughts / writing )

City night

Konica12543

 

 

 

How I loved the city night

When fit and young.

That sense of something wild
unseen
beyond an edge.

This mind, alert.

Alone.

In early hours.
Past corners turned
on silent streets.

 

Those sounds
from hidden creatures
taking fright before
my tread.

Heard so quickly
crashing through
the undergrowth.

 

I saw dark bushes twitch.

Yet glimpsed no sight
to show which
kind lay
lurking there.
Among damp roots and earth.

With keener eyes
than mine.

 

While
in our human realm
I sought one female
counterpart.

Some renewed chance
to feel need’s thrill
aroused along
these limbs.

And catch a trace
of scented
skin.

 

To taste life’s feast.

 

Or just
(perhaps)

be preyed

upon

 

 

again.

 

 

 

 


 


 

 

Hi all!

This sprang into my head as I gazed across the city, just before midnight.

Thoughts of the early 1980’s.
Walking home from clubs, at 3 a.m.
Still hoping for adventures.
(Which never came.)

(Though I saved an unconscious fox from traffic, once.
And carried a stranded toad to safety, on a river bank.)

I had no real idea how to attract women.

(Now it’s too late, anyway.)

These days, I fail at attracting people via writing, instead.

 

March will mark a third anniversary of the site.

I’m unsure about carrying on blogging, after that.
(Stats give little encouragement for continuing.)

Comments are always VERY welcome!

 

Art on the blog is mine: I hope you like it?

 

Thanks for reading. 🙂

 

 


( anxiety /art / beauty / blog / blogging / depression / life / mental health / painting / poem / poetry / reading / thoughts / writing )

Unvisited

 

1_Page_25

 

 

They were wrong.

All those who claimed
that love would
seek me out
in time.

I lived no bright lit moments.

No great days.

 

She went unfound.
The longed-for one.

 

I searched on.
Though with
shrinking hope.

Through painful years
while ill.

 

Now old
I’d best
just shun desires.

Or lock them from
my heart.

Then sit here
quiet.

Resigned
at such
familiar
emptiness.

 

This place
I rent.

Unvisited
for over two decades.

 

 

 

It’s getting late.

I need to sleep:

So reach, and close
the blinds.

 

Once truth recedes
perhaps
I’ll gain

companionship

 

in dreams.

 

 

 

 

 


 


 

 

Update

Following an internal haemorrhage (melaena) in January:
I surmounted anxiety, and arranged a gastroscopy.

After my refusing sedation, hospital nurses warned me patients retch when the long tube (containing a camera) is pushed down their throat.
But I surprised them, by enduring the whole procedure silently.

(It feels nice, as a sad old poet, to occasionally master ones oversensitivity.)

Fasting (18 hours without food) made things tougher.
Yet going six hours on zero liquids was worse.

Anyway, I’m glad that’s done, now.  🙂

 

Comments are always VERY welcome!  🙏

Art on the blog is mine: I hope you like it?

 

Thanks for reading.

 

 


( anxiety / art / blog / depression / life / love / mental health / poem / poems / poetry / reading / relationships / thoughts / writing )

Blogging tips

1_Page_06

 

 

Tiny things can trip us up!

Bloggers who write well, and create sites of beauty, may miss simple details.

Below are some examples:

 

(Tag-tastrophies!)

1)  Under-tagging.

It’s sad, finding good posts, neglected, and barely viewed.
Because they were cast, under-tagged, onto the WordPress Reader feed.

2) Over-tagging.

At the opposite extreme: other posts fail after adding too many tags.
Getting classed as spam, and excluded from the Reader.

3) Narrow-tagging.

Picking tags so limited that perhaps nobody follows them, reduces views drastically.
(OK: I invented a word, but hope you understand the idea?)

 

Tag tips:
Choose a minimum of one category (“Uncategorized” is the vacant default state)
and between 5-12 tags, per post.
Yet do not exceed 15 categories and tags, in total.

Devise tags which are liable to be searched for, or popular.
Unusual tags normally gain least traffic.

 

4) Blog-link your Gravatar.

Don’t be hard to find!
An unlinked avatar is like sending cards with no return address.
Your image should give curious people a route to your site.
(I discover much interesting work via new “likes” on my blog.)

 

5) Slabs of text?

Paragraphs and spaces aren’t just for wimps!
Why make it tough on your reader’s eyes?

 

6) Post bloat?

Less is often more.
If you’ve ever skimmed, skipped sections, scrolled toward an end,
or given up partway through a post, you probably know what I mean.

(Which leads me to…)

 

7) Blog-stravaganzas?

These risk overstimulation:
with multiple subjects, digressions, visual effects, GIFs, links, audio/video, etc.
Unappreciative visitors could seek a plainer read, elsewhere.

 

Of course, long-form pieces can also be great!

 

8) Check your spam.

Genuine comments get filed there, occasionally.

 

9) Timing matters!

For attracting new followers: best avoid publishing when they are at work or asleep.
I post Sunday evening, from the UK, because America is 5-8 hours behind us.
(Hence, at midday, here, it would be only 4 a.m. in California.)

 

 

Apologies!

To those familiar with the above points already.
I intended saving a few less-experienced bloggers my own, painful, learning curve.

What blogging tip do you wish you had heard sooner?

Comments are VERY welcome!

(Please feel free to share, if you think this might help others.
My audience is so small, hardly anyone will access the information, here.
In fact, not a single person, who could benefit, might see it.
But, hey, I tried.)

 

Thanks for reading.

 

(Art on the blog is mine.)

 


( art / beauty / blog / blogging / culture / ideas / inspiration / life / opinions / prose / reading / thoughts / writing )

Through fat and thin

 

Konica12053

 

 

 

Perhaps I was meant to be fat?

Always waking hungry
craving breakfast as
a start.

And done digesting that
arrived
strong appetite
for lunch.

After eating this
extended sluggishness
dragged on.

Until an evening meal
consumed

spread need
of rest

then sleep.

 

Hence
imagined workouts

all postponed.

To days
which

never came.

 

 

 

 

 

Since writing the above lines, in 1981, I continued avoiding the gym.

Later, chronic illness deterred exercise.
Yet I remained fairly slim.
Until around 2014.

Once consulted, doctors said expanding waist size often happened during “middle age”.

Next, an unusual type of vertigo attacked.
The scales went into reverse.
Whatever I ate, weight loss persisted. Alarmingly fast.

(From peaking at 87kg (192lbs/13.9) I dropped 27kg (60lbs): to 60kg (130lbs/9.2).)

By 2015, very weak, it became harder lifting my feet.
I began shuffling along.

A few people wondered if I was dying.
(Such thoughts also worried me.)

A test revealed severe pancreatic insufficiency.
I had been wasting away due to malnutrition.
Literally starving.
Because my stomach failed at digesting food.

Doctors focussed on this skinny state.

Though I haven’t gained the weight back, despite years of enzyme supplements.

 

There are positive sides:

Being nearer a semi-goth look.
Without makeup.

My cheekbones show more.
I quite like them.

School uniform could fit again.

 

So, that’s something.

As an M.E./CFS sufferer
(across three decades)
I’ve moved from ill and fat.

To ill and thin.

 

Thin seems better.

 

But

 

I’d sooner be well.

 

 

 

 


 


 

 

Hi everyone!

Frankly, I felt too sick and depressed for blogging, this week.
But, didn’t want to give in, and miss a chance of interacting with you all.
So decided on posting, anyway.

Comments are always VERY welcome! 🙏

Art on the blog is mine. Hope you like it?

Thanks for reading. 🙂


( Anxiety / art / beauty / blog / depression / illness / life / mental health / poem / poetry / reading / thoughts / writing )

Inspiration

 

1_Page_11

 

Words form

on the lips
and tongue.

One writes them.

Yet
it’s never done.

 

Lines come
from the fingers

spun
by mind
they wind brief
curves.

Signs waxing
fast.

 

Before their fade

resumes

more hidden
growth.

 

Which shapes
or rends

some
fundamental

vacancy.

 

 

That void
we sense
through fruitless
days.

 

Spent listening

to

our sighs.

 

 

 

 

 

 



 

 

The above suddenly arrived in my head, on Christmas morning (2019).

Despite not desiring rhyme, I find myself being pushed toward it, recently.

Perhaps a muse is making sport of me?
I fear rejecting inspiration, in case it disappears again (recalling 13 barren years).

This poem resisted attempts at erasing certain words.
So, feeling the piece wasn’t bad enough to destroy: I let rhymes remain.

I worry about becoming too old, and ill, for reliably judging my own work.

Do any other poets experience falling involuntarily into rhyme?

 

Comments are always VERY welcome! 🙏

 

(Art on the blog is mine. Hope you like it?)

 

Thank you for reading. 🙂

 


 

(PS:

Following my internal haemorrhage (see note beneath previous post “Last love”)  🙁  🏥
I underwent a medical procedure at local hospital (urgent gastroscopy) earlier this week.
May discuss it when full results are back.)


( anxiety / art / beauty / blog / depression / inspiration/ life /mental health / poem / poetry / reading / thoughts / writing )