Poetry Blog by Graham Ramsden

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Stu Buck on The sound of settling masonry (Sun, 21 May 2017 09:29 pm)

raypool on Stone Circle on Divock Moor (Thu, 10 Dec 2015 10:19 pm)

Martin Elder on Summers End Turvin Moor to Cragg Vale (Thu, 19 Nov 2015 07:15 pm)

raypool on Summers End Turvin Moor to Cragg Vale (Thu, 19 Nov 2015 03:33 pm)

Stu Buck on Picking snails by moonlight (Thu, 19 Nov 2015 01:45 pm)

Cynthia Buell Thomas on Vaccary Walls (Sat, 20 Jun 2015 03:14 pm)

John Coopey on Poets Pathways (Tue, 20 May 2014 09:11 pm)

Graham Ramsden on Poets Pathways (Tue, 20 May 2014 06:47 pm)

Dave Bradley on Poets Pathways (Mon, 19 May 2014 11:46 pm)

Graham Ramsden on Over the Edge (Sun, 24 Nov 2013 02:09 pm)

The sound of settling masonry

Dead watershot walls sink into the green and brown land turned spongy by ice and winter rain.

Mortar crumbles, speckling the peaty podsol.

Soil conjoined with tree roots hidden for millennia

Sometimes is revealed by strong Pennine winds exerting force.

Loosened stones occasionally fall to earth

startling the sheltering sheep folded in the ruin.

Shiny quartz pebbles that once defl...

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Stone Circle on Divock Moor

Stone Circle on Divock Moor

Double ring of seventy five stones

Mostly flat set in the banked moor surface

Purpose unknown, lost in the mists of time

Bronze Age man must have gathered at this moot

The eastward view, mountains folded on one another

Fell-sides changing colour with the seasons

Provide a dramatic background

One large stone with no markings, no runes

Cleft wit...

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Moorland Mountain Rocks Stones Circle Cumbria

Summers End Turvin Moor to Cragg Vale

Summer’s End, Turvin Moor to Cragg Vale

The long dry spell affects me

Peat desiccated and dusty taking the shine off my boots

White sand blown and banked at the path sides into small dunes

Quartz scoured from rock outcrops peppers the peat hags

Heather flowers faded from purple to brown husks clinging to clothing

Collon Bobs with ash coloured stems petrified by last winter’s burn

...

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Picking snails by moonlight

Picking snails by moonlight

Copy moon phases for planting

 Waxing and Waning, as tabled in books

Kylo cows caught out by the bright glow

Waned moon now only a sliver, plants slowing down

Gastropods will feed easy tonight after the rain

Moondrops studding dark vegetation

Waxing orb reflects the far off sun producing silver probing light

Catching a further shower

A Moonbow...

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Vaccary Walls

Vaccary Walls

Stone lines veining the landscape

Quarried slabs pulled from the earth

Placed upright making a stone fence

Enclosing green fields for Cattle and Sheep

Dividing bog and tussock

Residual hedge trees find purchase for roots

Alongside the rough stones

Where the valley gives way to peat hag and Bilberry

A Buzzard overhead begins a shallow upward spiral

High a...

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Sunken Forests

Sunken Forests

Cardigan Bay, Ceredigion and Turvin Moor, Yorkshire

4000 years ago trees buried in the peat by a changing climate

Oak Pine Alder Willow and Birch stumps linked and lost  

 

Cantre’r Gwaelod in folklore tells of a Welsh Atlantis flooded 

Gates were left open drowning the forest, now lost in time

A wild wood forgotten, secrets safe under the sea

 

The Yorks...

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Poets Pathways

Mostly the surface is hard and stony but often cropped grass softens the step

Paths between hamlets and villages scoured by countless feet over centuries

Inspiring stanzas and outpourings of romantic verse

Passing through a squeaking rusty kissing gate hung with Ivy the way enters a wood

Tarn and Mere flood the valley bottom mirroring the surrounding mountains

Geese shatter the refl...

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Flowers Lake Mountain Cumbria Poet

Over the Edge

 

Black gritstone Laithe barn facing the watery late afternoon sun

Echoes to the clatter of bovine hooves on shiny dung slicked cobbles

Milking complete, the plod to grazing fields underway accompanied by buzzing flies

Tails flicking, heads shaking, the small herd spreads though the running grass each cow finding space

The field edge drops away into the steep wooded valley patched b...

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Head of Steam Station Bar

 
Waiting at the  Head of Steam with a foaming pint
 
Eastwood’s Nettle Thrasher
 
Waiting for a train
 
With a poet from Barnsley
 
Macmillan, not a nurse
 
A poet, on a train
 
 
 
Train arrives, late I remember
 
With a poet from Barnsley
 
Alliteration in Huddersfield
 
Blank Verse to Berry Brow
 
Pa...

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Damsons at Bilberry Hall SE 077 219

Damsons at Bilberry Hall  SE 077 219

Blue velvet drupes with a white dusty bloom hang from scrubby hedge shrub

Germinating from a discarded stone years ago finding a favourable niche

Growing in the Quickthorn marking the edge of cleared moorland along the stony track

Some early ripened have become windfalls eaten by birds and insects on the dusty ground

Dry crazed stones add...

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Walking in the snow

Walking in the snow

Deepest fall since 64

Higher than the road signs

Higher than the walls

Drifts like frozen waves

Drifts we walked Alpine style

Wind sculpted patterns and shapes

Angels against gravity

Silhouetted against the cobalt sky

Bright enough to sear the retina

Meadows blown clear of snow

Grass stalks desiccated and wan

Contrast with drif...

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Hairy Wood Ant

Hairy Wood Ant

Moist cool world outside

Brown and Yellow dome

Inside

Patterned Pine needles tunnelled

By insect community

Heat and Acid

The Rangers Bluebell litmus test

Turns petals from blue to pink

Ant Life

A crowded busy ordered life

A job for life

A short life

Life stubbed out by a tourist foot

To be

Recycled in the woodland hill

...

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Lovelocks

Lovelocks

 

Dawn sunshine over Seville highlights a filigree metal bridge crossing Rio Guadalquiver.

 

Hot Andalusian sun warms a thousand padlocks clipped to iron each with two names and a love heart.

 

Scratched and etched with a stylus or a marker pen

Locked and Interlocked to form a Love Chain.

 

Young love in Spain, the start of things to come.

Lives...

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Moor Music

 

The shrill piping call of the returning Curlew

Contrasting with the lonely peep- peep of Golden Plover

Plaintive note of Peewit carried on the wind from its arching flight

Wading birds reclaiming their share of the corduroy moorland

Nesting sites found on drier ground among ling and crowberry

Ascending notes of Skylark lift the spirit and raise hopes

Honk of Raven ...

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birdsMoorlandsongs

Golden Fibs

 

Start

Move

Progress

Then advance

Slow down the process

Confidence waning, recession

 

Seeds

Sprout

Black dark

Into light

Unlocks the gene code

To reproduce the next generation

 

Bud

Leaf

Unfurls

Catching sun

Photosynthesis produces

The raw materials for growth

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Pile of Stones Shackleton Moor

The final passage of man’s impact

Stones won and worked from a gritty rock face

Once made a shelter, a base, a home

Long abandoned and without form

A vegetated hump on the moor edge reveals

Tilted on its clean worked facet

A stone sink in ashlar remains whole

Testimony to lore

Cleanliness’ was next to godliness

In the high lonely Pennines

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HillsPenninesStones

Castlerigg Stone Circle

entry picture

 

This circle of Lakeland stone megaliths that fell to earth some say

In an open meadow encircled by towering hills

Mute stones bear testimony to the beliefs of its long forgotten builders

Stand and stare in awe

Dance barefoot feeling the ancient vibes

Grass between the toes or brown mud, sometimes snow

Connecting with land, earth and the grey stones

Join hands w...

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Stones Cumbria

Thirteen Shouting Americans

Kennedy shouted “We do things not because they are easy but because they are hard”

Then they shot him

Martin Luther King shouted “I have a Dream”

Then they shot him

Bob Dylan shouted poems of Love and War

He politicised a whole generation

Timothy Leary   shouted “Tune in Turn on and Drop out”

California relaxed

Billy Graham shouted “Come on Down”

Causing many...

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AmericaShout

Watershed This Morning

Watershed this Morning

 

Hill divided, yellow and grey

Sun and frost, rain and fog

Where is that invisible line?

Crossing the A 58

 

Now I see the coloured arch

Through prism droplets

Appearing North South on the blacktop

Counties divided by fractured light

 

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The Beck Stone

Beck Stone

Rounded lump of grey gritstone now balanced in the beck

Divides rushing stream linking high heather moor to distant sea

 A shining silver thread through dale and wold to wide Humber

This same stone, surface scrubbed smooth by falling water

Now releases a stanza carved by a craftswoman from a script written by a poet

Ink to paper

Hammer to chisel

Rock to eye

Wo...

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MoorlandStanzaStones

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