Val asked us to write an abecedarian poem on the thenes of self discovery:

Ancient paths lead me
Beside the rivers of old
Chanting to me their soul songs
Dancing in the noonday sun
Etching on my heart their meanings
Flavouring my life anew
Going inwards I find a self
Holding visions and dreams
Inviting me to find the brightest
Jewels shining with new life
Kinetic rays of clarity
Lovesongs rare but true
Mansions of glory
Nights of innocence
Opulence divine
Priceless these things
Quiet in their divinity
Raising my mind to the skies
Soaring with me
To a better place
Understanding the truth of love
Visions of what I could be
Wanderings taking me deep inside
Xylophones playing out the tunes
Yellow orchids swaying
Zest for life again


Val, of ‘A Different Perspective’ is running an End of Summer Scavenger Hunt. She asks us to write a sestina on the theme of exploration. Here is my effort!

Exploring her world the child
Looked up at the silent night sky
Searching for God in the darkness
Amidst the twinkling stars
Holding onto a strong hand
If only she could fly
But she knew she was bound to this earth

Often she had played in the earth
Delving like a child
Wishing that she could fly
Just like the birds in the sky
Through the soil she trailed her hand
Waiting to see the stars

She wondered at the stars
Her feet planted on the earth
Holding out her hand
To be guided like a child
Trying to touch the sky
Watching the raptors fly

Once she believed she could fly
And touch the moon and the stars
Though darkened was the sky
Just like the things of the earth
Amazing it was to the child
Who held all things in her hand

She drew pictures with her hand
Knowing her spirit could fly
The simplicity of the child
Allowed her to touch the stars
She was not now bound to the earth
She knew she could reach the sky

So wondrous was the sky
She held it in her hand
Whilst standing on the earth
Willing her soul to fly
So many were the stars
So simple was this child

She discovered that she could fly her hand
Reached out to the sky held stars
So simple was the child her feet upon the earth


Fandango gave us the words, “I don’t think you sufficently appreciate.”

Jim sat in his leather armchair by the fire, newspaper in hands. Monica was in the kitchen wrestling with a wonky oven that wouldn’t work properly, surrounded by dirty clothes that she hadn’t had time to wash. Even the washing machine had its moments when it seemed to go on strike.

The beef that she had put into the oven what seemed hours ago just wasn’t cooking properly. And Jim was partial to a bit of nice beef – complete with roast potatoes and horseradish of course.

“When’s dinner going to be ready?” he shouted impatiently.

“Oh it won’t be too long now,” shouted back Monica. “It’s this damned oven. It won’t work properly.”

Jim sat back and lit another cigar.

Some minutes passed and Monica, feeling frustrated, decided to call it a day with the beef. He would just have to have it rare. The roast potatoes might be a bit hard, but never mind. At least the horseradish would be okay as it was out of a jar!

As she passed the pile of dirty clothes she spied one of Jim’s shirts. To her horror she saw lipstick on the collar. It certainly wasn’t hers either. She never had time to apply make up nowadays anyway. She was too busy dealing with cooking and keeping the house in order with rickety equipment. She stared at the lipstick. Whose was it?

Suddenlym she erupted.

She picked up the shirt, took it into the living room and shoved it under Jim’s nose.

“What the hell do you think this is?” she spat out at him.

Jim took another puff of his cigar and replied,

“You never were very adventurous in the sex department. I don’t think you sufficiently appreciate how much a man needs good sex. And as you were not willing to provide it, I took up on Diana’s offer.”

Monica, outraged, went into the kitchen, returned with a carving knife and stuck it in him.


She always did wear a MASK. Everyone thought she was a witch. Well, that was what she portrayed herself as. She took great delight in repulsing everyone. Most people avoided her.

It came to the end of term ball at the college. A time of great excitement and anticipation. Everyone planned how they would look on that night, for many months. It was a great occasion in the life of the college.

The evening was beginning to get into full swing, everyone dolled up to the nines. Suddenly, from behind a SCREEN, Bernie appeared. Everyone started to gasp and TREMBLE. She was beautiful. Her hair that was long and naturally blonde was flowing down her back, making its debut. Her gown was gold in colour, and her shoes matched. Her face was made up beautifully, in a delicate kind of a way. She looked soft and gentle and simply gorgeous.

Bernie was the talk of the college after that, but she soon reverted to being the witch that they knew, or that they thought they knew. But now, they treated her with a kind of reverence. Secretly, Bernie was laughing. If she had pulled that off she could pull anything off. She felt omniscient. Abd who knows – she probably was!


I sat in my wheelchair in the middle of a huge hall, in the total darkness, not knowing which way I was facing, or where the door to get out of the room was. I was alone. I was panicking. Sitting at a table at one end of the room was a group of people. I had been sitting with this group of people just a few minutes earlier, when one of them attacked me verbally and ridiculed me in front of the others. The hall was a church hall, and we were all meant to be having a friendly coffee and chat together. The attack came quite out of the blue. I had no idea who was at the table, for people never spoke to me directly, or said my name. It was impossible for me to discern voices and who was speaking at any given time. I was alone and cut off, though in company. I inhabited a different world to them. The world of a blind wheelchair user.

The person sitting next to me WAS someone whom I knew. Norma. She had had a habit of accosting me at various times, and the last time it had been because I was not smiling and waving at people when they smiled and waved at me. It was known that I was blind, but no allowance was made for that. Norma had accosted me telling me that I was stand offish and snobbish. Additionally, I was full of pride, and that was a deadly sin and I would have to go to Confession. She repeated this to everyone around the table that morning, at which I swung my wheelchair round, intending to leave the room. However, it was something that I could not do without help. Someone had guided me into the hall, but now, there was no one to guide me out. I could hear the group of people, led by Norma, continuing to talk about me, and I just sat there, right out in the middle of the huge hall, trapped and helpless. There was no way at all that I could find my way out, and the doors were double doors anyway, that someone would have to open for me. No one came to my aid.

I sat there for a while, smarting, afraid, and trapped. Unable to leave and get away from this cruelty. In time, however, the lady from the kitchen noticed my plight and came to help me and guide me out through the double doors. Norma noticed this happening, and followed us, getting in my way so that I ran over her foot. At that, she yelled loudly, so that all the others could hear,

“NOW she’s run over my bloody foot.”

My only way out of this was to ring my husband to come to the church and pick me up. I was in shreds..

The darkness inside me was impenetrable. I was blind, and through no fault of my own, was being accused of what was viewed as a terrible sin – unjustly.

There was only one place that I could go, and, once we had been home to recuperate somewhat, I asked my husband to take me to an ancient little church where I always found peace.

It was almost night time by now, and it was dark by the time we got there. I went and sat inside the little church in the total darkness. It was pitch black. As I sat, feeling like a stone, and as if nothing could reach me, quite suddenly, I had an amazing experience. It was as if the dark was putting its arms around me. I cannot to this day explain it or understand it, but all that I can say is that it happened. It felt like a mother putting her arms around me.

It was this experience that made me start thinking more about the darkness. It was not necessarily bad, or a thing to be feared. It could have a good side to it too. That day changed my life for ever.