Poetry Blog by Hannah Collins
She came to the city.
The scent of the countryside all around her and all within her still.
She was out of the convent school now
And away from the grip of her parents
And the shadows of the large dark and purple mountains.
The sun was shining in the city
And she found that little room at the top of the stairs
And she polished the floor and put down a soft carpet
Thursday 14th June 2018 7:08 pm
As you climb to that little room in The Tower
The deep, steep spiral staircase
So difficult to negotiate
And no way back,
With the long line of people climbing steadily behind you,
You reach a point where you feel,
No, I can't . . .
I don't want to go any further . . .
And it's just at that moment, you're there.
In that tiny room,
Where Richard 111 is said to have ...
Saturday 9th June 2018 10:23 am
Early morning on the Underground train.
People take a seat, look tired, morose.
A full day of work ahead,
Another day dawning,
Many just yawning.
Head down, glancing at the phone, reading the newspaper, the magazine,
Not speaking, not noticing very much at all.
Suddenly he got onto the train,
A large rotund kind of man with a very red face.
Wearing a busy patterned suit ...
Thursday 7th June 2018 6:24 pm
You know it's there
That thing in the cupboard.
You never want to tarry there,
In that big cupboard, the one by the stair
Because you know it's in there.
It's not exactly human
Or totally a monster,
It's somewhere in between,
It's very tall
With skeleton fingers that could tighten around your neck,
Could sneak up behind
Monday 28th May 2018 12:05 pm
Esther, you were the girl they didn't like.
You had a difficult last name that no one could spell
And a difficult father
And somehow for reasons we didn't know,
The teachers didn't like you or him.
I sat next to you at school,
I was your friend,
Your only friend,
You had such fine golden hair
But so thin, your scalp shone through.
New to life,
As we both...
Friday 11th May 2018 9:47 am
We came home and there was this monitor thing attached to the wall
outside our appartment.
It hadn't been there before - had it ?
It had a large red light
And various buttons and little dials.
We telephoned the company - what is it for ?
It's just to monitor, they said, nothing more
Can they see us ?
Can they know the things we do ?
Have you ever been in trouble wit...
Tuesday 8th May 2018 9:48 pm
The veiled woman holding the baby
Stands hands outstretched asking for money.
'Change, change' she says
'Give you give'
Ninety nine per cent of people pass by,
But I stop.
Her eyes meet mine
I want to say
Take your child to Social Services,
Don't beg on the street.
But as I look I feel a long ago memory that isn't even mine.
I hear the sound of...
Monday 30th April 2018 8:43 pm
I have a neat little wristband I wear at all times.
It has a slow throbbing pulse
Which quickens to a series of beeps when he wants me.
He has a wristband just the same
And we conduct our love affair this way
Though we have never met
And never will.
We were matched up through millions of couples
And with the aid of new technology
And with advanced telepathy we began...
Tuesday 24th April 2018 10:06 pm
The local Council planted the tree outside our house.
It was tiny and fragile to begin with.
I was tending the front garden, though it wasn't mine,
It belonged to the elderly couple downstairs
Who started to complain about the tree.
The front garden was only a border
And the soil was hard and rocky,
So I was watering it daily
And fertilizing with plant food.
And the urba...
Tuesday 17th April 2018 9:54 am
He sits alone in a cluttered room
Sheets of music and paper everywhere,
Half eaten dinners on the table,
Outdated phone books piled on the stair.
His eyes penetrating blue,
His dark hair streaked with grey,
He paces about uneasliy
Searching for music to play.
He once lived down the hall from me
And I've never forgotten him.
I love to go to visit him,
To enter into...
Saturday 17th March 2018 2:15 pm
Make me a star
Don't make me wait another day.
Put me on TV
I wanna be a weather girl
Telling all the weather news,
All about the snow and storms and floods,
Smiling as I say it,
Not giving a fuck.
I wanna be famous,
Wanna be in Gossip magazine.
I wanna be on early morning TV,
After dancing all night long
With someone massively famous
Sunday 11th March 2018 10:41 am
We were two crazy girls
Let out of the constraints of family and the red house.
Unsupervised, going completely wild.
Travelling to the dark side of the city.
Buying cheap jewellery
And a little shrunken head thing,
We called Tantrum.
We met those two boys
Hanging around that bad side of town.
It was raining and we sat down on the steps trying to thread the beads we had b...
Sunday 4th March 2018 1:42 pm
Men can cry now
They can cry on TV.
In the past, just before,
When anyone cried on TV,
They would put their middle finger of their right hand
Into the corner of one eye,
Withdraw the finger, look at it and then say 'sorry',
'Sorry', to whomever may be observing this ritual.
No tears, no sound, no sniff, no snot,
Just 'sorry' . . . .
But that's all changed because men ...
Thursday 22nd February 2018 4:16 pm
My grandfather always promised me
That he would tell me the secret of the ship in the bottle.
He had a ship in a bottle,
It stood on the tall dresser by the sky blue wall in the dining room.
The ship had beautiful pure white satin sails
In a gleaming clear glass bottle,
And I would always ask him how the ship got into there.
He promised one day he would tell me
When the tim...
Sunday 11th February 2018 4:22 pm
I got my first kiss there
It was in the secret place
An area behind the disused cinema
That had stood there silent and dark,
Totally forgotten about,
But us kids knew where it was.
All dark with ivy around
And lots of creepy caterpillars.
I didn't really like that boy
But I liked that first kiss
Because it tasted like ice cream, strawberries
Saturday 3rd February 2018 10:01 pm
They say men are like London buses,
That's what people say.
You're waiting all alone in the cold forever,
Then suddenly three come along all at once.
The first one is absolutely packed and there's no room for you to climb aboard
And the driver won't even let you on,
Well not without disposing of someone else first !
The second one is crowded but has space and time for you,
Thursday 25th January 2018 9:57 pm
He comes home in the evening
Always in a bad mood
Morose and silent
The children have already eaten
And rush off to their rooms with his entrance.
He eats his meal while watching TV
His wife laughs at the jokes
That he just cannot see.
Early morning at 6 am
Sees him waiting for the bus
In the dark and freezing cold.
His wife grudgingly got up
To cook a drea...
Wednesday 10th January 2018 9:34 pm
It was this time of year last winter
Christmas all but forgotten,
Swans drifting by on the frozen pond.
The forced hyacinths
Exuding their brutal, almost death - like scent,
In the hush of winter,
Love came my way.
Two people lost really
Standing on the bridge,
Looking down into the swirling current,
The weir that flowed continuously,
Crashing icy cold,
Tuesday 2nd January 2018 5:26 pm
I looked out of the window early
There was a man in the garden opposite,
A stranger, tall, bulky, strong looking.
Wearing a Liam Gallagher parka and faded blue jeans.
Up early, maybe on a burglary because they've gone away for Christmas.
Maybe a serious gas leak or some other Xmas drama.
Then he bends down, bowls with milk, cat food, feeding the cat.
In the drizzling rain, in ...
Tuesday 26th December 2017 5:16 pm
It was Christmas Eve
And he didn't come
He didn't come home
He wouldn't get home in time.
He was working,
He lived with us but I barely knew him,
Didn't understand who he was,
Someone called Daddy.
But I was just a lttle kid
And it was Christmas Eve.
He won't come in time, said mother,
He's at work,
Perhaps a Christmas party...
Monday 18th December 2017 8:51 pm
Kenny and Arhur.
They owned our house until my father bought it.
They owned all the houses in that street and the store on the corner.
And all the garages too.
Kenny and Arthur, they parked their Rolls Royce Silver Cloud outside our house
And I would play on it when I was a young child,
Climbing over it in my summer sandals, sliding around on it and putting sticky fingers all ove...
Wednesday 6th December 2017 8:17 pm
It was a funny thing
Because they were together
But they were divorced
And he was dying of a terminal disease,
Then she went away on holiday
And left him there
And he turned to me.
I gave him my phone number
Because I was always out
And he couldn't crawl along the corridor
To my place
He was thin,
I think he had a colostomy ba...
Sunday 19th November 2017 10:15 pm
How brave he was
How brave and brave
Lying there in the open field
Stilled and rigid by death
One eye slightly opened
Still looking to the sky.
So young in the field of death
Corn coloured hair
Shot down by the military canon
His body broken
But his spirit still looking skywards
To where the startled birds fly.
He was unknown
Tuesday 7th November 2017 8:58 pm
They put her in a little brass cage
Quite ornate really as cages go
With filigree edges
And a silver rose door.
And everyone put their faces up against the bars
And wriggled their fingers,
Inviting her to come to them.
They brought her exotic seeds
From far castaway islands,
Cleaned her cage with scented oils
For healing and soothing.
Put pearls of amethyst be...
Thursday 26th October 2017 9:15 pm
It was just where the bus stop stands outside the library.
Noisy, crowded part of town
And he came along
Led by a dog.
He was blind.
He stopped near me,
Will you tell me when the number 30 comes along, he said.
Yes, of course, I said
But how can you be sure I won't be telling you for the number 43 instead?
I trust you, he said.
Was he really blind?
I wanted to wave...
Monday 23rd October 2017 4:32 pm
He used to go down to the garden shed
To get away from her talking and his compromising , he said
The shed was so tidy
All the tools in their place
Cleaner and more ordered than many people's homes.
He used to gaze from the small window in the garden shed,
Listen to the trains roaring by over the nearby railway bridge
I'll be on one of those trains one day, he said,
Sunday 15th October 2017 7:02 pm
He glances through albums of photos
Mostly oriental ladies with a grin or a blank stare
All with very similar details,
Desperate to come to the West
For the riches they imagine are there.
He wants a wife but is not that interested really
He spent more effort choosing his car
But it's time he settled,
After very little success with local women
He's shipping one in from af...
Sunday 8th October 2017 2:47 pm
I always kept that painting of a little boat
The one you gave me
But each time I looked at it
The boat seemed to be moving further away,
Until I feared one day it would be out of the picture.
Why did I choose to photograph those two empty deckchairs by the ocean?
Sensing a separation, sensing something.
I remember that remarkable day,
It was so frighteningly hot
And you ...
Tuesday 3rd October 2017 4:27 pm
Sweet music drifts in through the open window
As he drifts in
Sits wearily down
Talks of all the drama, all the dreams
All the places he's been.
He's seen the frozen lakes,
The dolphins in the wild,
The bronzed mountains of Nepal
The string of precious pearls from the distant maldives.
Don't listen to him, they whisper,
He's a hypnotiser, a mesmerise...
Friday 29th September 2017 9:00 pm
She's crazy, my father said
Always has been.
No, said my grandfather, not crazy, just one of a kind.
My aunt followed in the tradition of a long line of women
Who through the ages have chosen to live alone
Usually with a bunch of animals,
Growing their own food,
Not wanting any man.
In the past she would have been known as the Medicine Woman
Or the Midwife
Or The Fool...
Tuesday 26th September 2017 7:43 pm
I am usually so slow to love
A bit unobservant
But with him I loved him from the first time I met him.
He threw away a piece of paper and I retrieved it and kept it.
He was on my mind and somehow I didn't notice other things.
I knew he belonged to another and I hated the idea of being the third person
But I longed for him in every dream.
I kept checking my horoscope, eve...
Monday 25th September 2017 8:43 pm
An inner sadness in the soul, you called it
Keeping you in the shadows
On the edge of everything
And then we met and you knew you could be loved.
Other hands have held my hand since then
Bu never that way
Never like your loving fingers
That slipped through mine so effortlessly.
Walking in crowds together
Looking at paintings,
At eccentric lovers.
We knew ...
Saturday 23rd September 2017 5:07 pm
Sometimes we don't know what to believe.
She walked along the sunny side of the city
Regents Park of north-west London.
With the wonderfully elegant white embassy buildings,
Georgian windows and the Victorian zoo.
She was headed to the park pushing the baby in the buggy.
Past the highly scented rose garden and floral displays.
When they reached the sandpit...
Tuesday 19th September 2017 7:01 pm
I was at the back of the building
On the ground
Playing on the grass.
We called it 'The Grass'.
It was one of those pre war apartment buildings situated in the south of London,
Old and decrepit,
With wrought iron banisters, cold concrete staircases and long unimaginative walkways that echoed with sound.
He was on the third floor looking out of the window,
Our next door ne...
Sunday 17th September 2017 1:48 pm
The Corn Dolly
She was a little girl in the 16th century
She worked in the corn fields till her hands bled,
Her father was hung for stealing a slice of bread for her
And she wanders the fields forever more.
Her suffering was such, she knows no rest,
She has long tangled hair and wears torn rags,
She has no shoes on her blistered feet.
She haunts the countryside where wealth...
Monday 11th September 2017 5:04 pm
We were walking along the beach that day
He was behaving in that mean and moody way
That I had found so fascinating
But today was just a little grating.
We stared out at the sea
The two of us with no one near
I’ve got something to tell you, he said,
Dropping a stone into the ocean
From the wooden pier.
You’re not going to like it, he said.
Wednesday 6th September 2017 9:20 pm
The Man On The Corner
One day he just appeared on the corner
Just standing there on the corner by the train station.
No one knew who he was,
Or where he came from
Or what he wanted.
He just stood there night and day.
He didn’t eat,
Well, didn’t appear to.
At first men came with bottles and bricks
And threw them at him,
But he didn’t say anythi...
Sunday 3rd September 2017 6:44 pm
- 2017 - 2018 (37)