Windchime

I hear your voice in the morning as you call me

Beckons me to follow you home.

Where your voice lingers.

 

I gather trinkets that are reminders of you,

A windchime, a plant pot, a word unspoken

A feather, a seashell, a stray thought.

 

©Alison Jean Hankinson

This is for Day23 of  napowrimo18

The first line is loosely taken from Country Roads, a song I hear in my head often that makes me think of my mum and dad. It will be 10 years this summer since mum passed but I still gather things that she would have liked, and I still don’t know if I gather them for her or for me. Love my family. XXXX

This is also for d’Verse quadrille and the challenge word/thought was gather.

You are beautiful.

You are perfect just the way you are.

Every blemish is a mark of a wish or a milestone

That was part of your life and has meaning.

 

We wear our scars like jewellery

Ornate adornments of battles we have fought and sufferings we have silenced.

Loves we have lost, dreams that lay smashed at the feet of the soul-less.

 

You are perfect just the way you are-

So wear your skin with pride, it is your life’s canvas,

And your story unfolds with every step forward and every glance back towards the setting sun.

© Alison Jean Hankinson

this is for napowrimo Day 20. It is for my girls. With all my love. Mumma. XXXXX

Zoo 2017 (137).JPG

Three minutes to midnight-1984 revisited.

In 1984 at BRGS I was the editor of our School magazine “Squirrel”. I wrote a nihilistic editorial referring to Orwellian disaster, and the truth was the clock was sitting at three minutes to Midnight, something not to be taken lightly.

I suspect most of my friends in the same or similar age-group reflect back on what were perceived to be good times of the eighties despite its obvious flaws. The information age was just beginning to emerge and everything we did in the eighties was bigger and better than it had ever been before. The eighties gave us Top Gun wings and we flew, Gloria Gaynor and Sylvester Stallone made sure we would survive even if times were hard. I sent more than one failed relationship out the door in my pink legwarmers. I didn’t get swept off my feet by some Richard Gere, Officer type but I had fun trying. I am still convinced I owe a little bit of my own fortitude and resilience to Goldie Hawn’s performance in Private Benjamin and accepted my own quirks and foibles because of characters like Ally in the Breakfast Club.

Perhaps the ra-ra skirts and Club Tropicana were our own way of shaking off the pervasive doom that had settled on us throughout the previous decade,  which had been punctuated by strikes, unrest, fuel shortages and the three day week. We had come together as a nation to celebrate the Silver Jubilee, to protect our territory in the Falklands and to see our magical Princess wed her Prince and yet still the Cold war raged and the doomsday clock ticked on.

The dystopian nightmare of the nuclear propaganda machine, the make-shift attempts at fall-out shelters for Panaorma documentaries and the secret world beneath our cities seemed to be a dark shadow of a murky past once Gorbachev came to power in 1985 as I moved away to University. The cold war was over and just after my 23rd birthday, the Berlin wall came down, to me the very symbol of the spies and lies and iron curtain and all that we had feared.

Have we now come full circle, is this the return of the nightmare that was. What time is it now Mr Wolf?

©AlisonJean Hankinson

Link to the original Squirrel 1984.snip_20180416191113

There is only one video clip I can think off to celebrate/acknowledge both then and now:

 

 

Basking in the boundless light of thy bitter love.

Be still my beating heart

In this boundless light I bask

In his bountiful love I bear witness

I wear love’s malleable mask.

 

Be still my beating heart

For fear of battles feigned in vain

And swordsman on his shining steed

Did my fragile heart reclaim.

 

Be still my beating heart

For he doth love another

And all the magic in the world

Will not ease my slumber.

 

Be still my beating heart

I must hide my shame and guilt

Give me strength grace and fortitude

And let my broken dreams be rebuilt.

 

©Alison Jean Hankinson

This is for napowrimo Day 8, the prompt was to write in the spirit of Shelley, which was perhaps a bit challenging at 7am, anyway this is as much in the spirit of Shelley as I can muster.

The image is of St George…I imagine this to be the fair damsel in distress once the rose petals have faded.

It was in the public domain on wikimedia-  attributed to circle of Lucas Cranach the Elder [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

 

 

Willow- bend without breaking

Through the silence of the night I hear you breathing heavily, the weight of the world on your shoulders,

You have learned to love others and nurture them all as a mother

And sometimes you get washed aside in the wake of a selfless storm.

 

Do not pity me- I am no victim,

I choose to do the things I do, I don’t need their gratitude

I am their friend, their wife, their mother, their lover, the whisper of light in the dark, a comforting sound through the vacuum of silence.

 

Through the years you have drudged and toiled, cooked their meals, held their hands, made their miserable monotonous lives a little less monochrome.

You were their teacher, their challenger, you coached as their mentor

And sometimes you were lost at sea in the current of compassion and a tide of woes.

 

Do not pity me, I have no need for sympathy

I held their lost souls in the palm of my hand and gave them love and space to grow,

I kept them safe in a sheltered harbour. I may bend but don’t break. I am willow.

 

©Alison Jean Hankinson

The image was in the public domain from wikimedia labelled for reuse.

This is for napowrimo 2018. Day 7.

A mother on raising sons.

My first was stillborn,

My cries carried across the fields on the cusp of a winter storm

The snow lay thick on the ground,

I lay like a mewling ewe and cradled her in my arms

Before the long walk home.

 

There were others, each swelling of my belly a signal of his pervasive masculinity.

Three brothers followed by a changeling child and so we were cast aside forced to live as outcasts

I moved boulders and stones and tilled the soil, back-breaking into the dead of night

A bairn on my back and another one snug as a bug deep inside.

He couldn’t feel my pain.

 

One by one they all moved on, they wearied at our laborious life

They found themselves new families and took themselves a wife

And I was left behind, old hag with sagging breasts

No milk to nursefeed bairns on winter nights

No place for my wearied bones to rest.

 

© Alison Jean Hankinson

This is for imaginary garden with real toads where we were invited to write in the voice of another.

On mother’s passing.

My mother’s last meal was cornflakes and I wonder did she spill a drop of milk, did she relish every lingering mouthful, did she know somewhere deep inside her soul that this was effectively her last supper.

Flushed and anguished

Pain obliterates, raindrops cascade down the dirty window pane.

One last breath

A sigh before death.

 

©Alison Jean Hankinson

I haven’t participated in napowrimo before so this is new to me, I used the prompt for day 6. I have participated in Nanowrimo successfully a number of times so I thought it was time for a change.