These Bastions…

These bastions of hope

Hunkered hulls

Iron wrought girders-tentative tendrils of tortured souls

Granite greying lies portraying

Sandstone hewn and lives pervading

Rugged landscape molten measures

Of love and labour and dreams unfettered.

Firth of Forth,

Sunshine on Leith

Grotesque, glib, grand

Bastions of strength, courage and hope hide beneath.

©Alison Jean Hankinson.

I am submitting this for open link night at d’Verse.

 

 

 

Mum’s last letter.

Handwriting didn’t come easily to me, my words tumbled out across the page as fast as my thoughts would carry them but with no time for neatness clarity or punctuation. Laborious lessons trying to perfect a precise clear-cut style between the lines, the endless lines, my sister’s handwriting remains the same as it was in those joined up lessons at school. Mine still resembles ducklings charging towards some azure blue lake with all the joy of momentum, joy and not a care in the world for how it looks to the rest of the world.

Her last letter, heaven only knows why she posted the parcels so early for Christmas, perhaps she knew. Her last act of love. She died on the Sunday half a world away and by Friday I held her last letter in my hand. Her writing cut through the void, the years the tears, the fears.

Precision and care

Her words carefully planted.

Snowdrops cut through snow.

 

©Alison Jean Hankinson

New Year rises

It was a turbulent week just like the weather. We saw the wolf moon shining bright in the New Year sky and it brought tidal wrath to the coastline. There were forecast to be High tides and they arrived at the same time as storm Eleanor. Around Cumbria and the Furness peninsula storm surge brought debris and made some of the roads impassable.

As we return to work and tried to re-establish the pre-Christmas normalcy in patterns of life and leisure we know with certainty that we are walking forwards into a turbulent future likely to match the week and mayhem of the wonderful wolf moon. Two supermoons this month, I wonder what the next one will bring.

High tide storm rising

Whispers of windswept dreams fly

New Year, wolf moon chides.

 

©Alison Jean Hankinson

This is for d’Verse haibun monday.

Whilst I am here this is the wonderful d’Verse anthology that has recently been published and is available to purchase on Amazon.

  1. Chiaroscuro – Darkness and Light, dVerse Anthology, 2017.

This is a collaborative project between the dVerse poets and dVerse team.   Over 100 poets from around the world contributed to this anthology.   We selected not only the best poems but also those poems that take the reader through a journey from the darkest places to the brightest. From the deepest sorrow into happiness and love. From the darkest streets to woods in spring. Come enjoy our journey.

Now available at Amazon North America and Amazon Europe.

Simple things

It was a simple gesture

………………….  As the sun rose the seedling grew

Nosed its way nonchalantly through the weeds.

…………….  Caressed by early summer sun,

Nourished by November rains.

 

With all its might it pushed through the merriment

Of opportunistic pumpkins and weary watermelons

And reached high for the sky,

……….  One leaf at a time,

stretching                sighing               saluting the sun.

 

It was a simple gesture

…………. It spoke of unfaltering love.

………………………… The sunflower smiled

…………   And reminded me that life is enriched

By the simple things.

 

©Alison Jean Hankinson.

This is for d’Verse meeting at the bar, where we were asked to consider silence. This sunflower was in my garden in NZ, planted as a seed by my husband to cheer me up in  Spring/summer 2014 when I was unable to tend the garden following major surgery. I could see it from the bedroom window.

In the arms of an angel.

Her graceful gesture

Now complete

He held her hand close-by.

 

She gave with love

Her life complete

His lifeless slumber nigh.

 

The slightest smile

That settled faintly on his face

The truth of love descried.

 

She caressed his hand

And kissed his lips

Before his final sigh.

 

©Alison Jean Hankinson

This is for d’Verse poetics where we are contemplating grace.

 

Leap of faith

From stability and steadfast surety,

We left for uncharted waters

Certain that resilience, faith and hope

Would enable us to endure

And weather uncertainties, brave challenges and more

It turned out to be a leap of faith

And fearsome obstacles lurked behind every door.

 

©Alison Jean Hankinson

This is for the first quadrille of the year at d’Verse. The leap was last year and I am hoping that this year we will be able to get a stronger foothold on this side…regroup consolidate…build…grow….heal….With love to you this New Year. Namaste.

 

 

Ode to the brogue- the ginnel of love.

When I grew up in days of old

And the sun set over yonder

Old folks spoke in northern brogue

It made me stop and ponder.

 

In the backstreets of old Rossendale

Where buxom lasses were bonny

We spoke with a local dialect

And people say we talked funny.

 

In claggy weather we had council pop

Winter woollies when feeling nesh

Mam put our mittens on a string

It made us kids look gormless

 

If we mithered we were clattered

Told to keep our cakeholes shut

They chided us umpteen times

To keep the back door shut.

 

We played hide and seek in ginnels

Cleared snow from neighbours paths

Skriked our way through family traumas

Sweated cobs when’t’sun were’t crackin flags.

 

We spoke a different language

Didn’t give tuppence for what you thought

We’d go t’foot of our stairs

If anyone sold us short.

 

Fresh air and love we lived off,

With Church socials on a Saturday night

We might have not talked proper

But we treated each other right.

 

© Alison Jean Hankinson

Image Eden Methodist Walking Day- C 1972

Image Eden Methodist Walking Day- C 1979

I am linking this for the last OLN at d’Verse.

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Brogue: a way of speaking Englishespecially that of Irish or Scottishspeakers: