Missing Ellen

For a moment my resolve waivers

I am on a precipice being plunged into darkness

By the weight of losing you.

Dull ache and yearning for your return.

Was I a good parent?

Should I have done more?

A flicker of doubt devours me.

 

©Alison Jean Hankinson

This is for d’Verse. Happy sixth birthday. It is Quadrille night and the word we were given was flicker. Ellen is my eldest twin daughter and we left her behind in NZ- very remiss of us. XXX

Being able to give… the greatest blessing.

I can smile and skip and scurry in hurry along the winding road

I can speak, chide and compliment and listen to lighten your load

I have food work and sustenance and a humble comfortable abode.

 

I am blessed with unfaltering hope and love and wings to fly

And distant dreams to share and amazing opportunities to try

And firm friendships love and family that death will always defy.

 

My family are a blessing and they give me hope each and every day

When I am lost they give me sense of purpose and help me find my way

They are my anchor in stormy weather when I would rather run away.

 

May you find your inner strength in the gifts of love you receive

May you give back compassionately to those who are in need

And remember that the most bountiful blessing is in the deed.

 

Alison Jean Hankinson

This was created in response to Paul Scribbles poetics challenge for d’Verse on the theme of blessings.

 

Storm clouds gather over Heysham Head.

 

Against the backdrop of the sea

My love for you rises with the tide

No plain nor perfect place I would rather be

With my time-worn soulmate at my side.

 

Sunset over Lakeland Hills

Windmills as far as the eye can see

Hand in hand we walk the sands

No plain nor perfect place I would rather be.

 

Storm clouds on the horizon

Wind blows strong across the land

Sudden wind chill makes us shiver

Hand in hand we walk the sands.

 

We head for home across the Head

In the Church ruins shelter and hide

Against the backdrop of the sea

My love for you rises with the tide.

 

Alison Jean Hankinson

 

Submitting this for open link night. At d’Verse.

Salford Pals

 

I have spent a considerable amount of time this weekend rebuilding the lives of my paternal Great-grandfather John Henry Mcclenan( McLanaghan) and my Great grandmother- his wife Frances Taylor/Skinner. It is a fascinating story of friendship, war, battles and lives lost, and love rising like a phoenix from the ashes to build what was to become a large and strong family. John Henry and his best friend George Skinner were to fight in the Boer War, George was killed and John Henry injured in the hip and returned to Salford to convalesce. On recovering he went to see George’s wife of 4 months Frances Skinner and over time they fell in love and were married on 14 December 1901.

Frances was 27 by this time but they went on to have 8 children, one of whom was my Grandfather Frank born in 1911(the one on the horse), and although getting on in years John Henry served with the Salford Pals 15th regiment from 1914-18, surviving a number of key battles including the Somme in 1916 and the siege of Thiepval July 1st 1916 and was awarded a number of medals. Frances and John’s fourth child was a daughter Hilda and her Great Grandson Christopher Finney went on to earn the George Cross for bravery in the Iraq war 2003. I think great things came from the broken fragments of John Henry’s Boer war broken-ness. He passed away in 1926 from amongst other things TB in the injured hip. I might not have fully complied with nature- but maybe war counts as the impact of human nature…

Bleak Boer War battle

John Henry lost George Skinner

Frail Fall brought Frances.

 

Alison Jean Hankinson

 

For d”verse our challenge is to write about finding beauty in the broken pieces or imperfection and/or the process of mending the broken pieces.- kintsugi. A “broken” object, cityscape or landscape, or personal experience of mending and embracing imperfections. Kintsugi means “golden rejoining,” and refers to the Zen philosophy of acknowleding flaws, embracing change, and restoring an object with a newfound beauty.

We cherish their footfalls

Geneology

we lived and died here

Names trickle by,

echoes of the past

Stories unfold

 

Startling revelations

In the stories we shared

Souls and mortal sins bared

 

We name our children in their honour

They will echo us forever

In their blood and bones.

 

Alison Jean Hankinson

 

This is for Quadrille with d’Verse.

Quadrille

They sing for him.

It is the community singing that does it for my Dad every time,

Every rugby and football match those anthems for the common man.

They capture heart and soul, and bridge dreams and memories

And he sings with them, they become one voice,

one song, one breath-taking moment

of shared understanding and surrender,

of solidarity, stoicism and strength.

His heart was broken

In that shared moment he saw it and claimed it.

His grief, his passion, his anger, his will to live

all in the community singing.

They sing for him.

 

Alison Jean Hankinson

 

poetics d’Verse

This is for Poetics and the evening is being hosted by Paul Scribbles and the theme was community.

IMG_1005

His heart was broken is a play on the words from The Proclaimers song Sunshine on Leith which is the anthem for Hibernian Football club. It has become one of my dad’s favourites even though he is a Turf Moor fan at heart.

Here is a link to a rendition of it:

Hibs 2016