Poetry Blog by Hannah Collins

Wild Heart

I call him Coeur Sauvage - Wild Heart,

Though he comes to me in many guises

And under many different names.

We walk together down endless avenues

Where the trees overlap in unison,

Blotting out the sky.

The barks of the trees hide many secrets and whispered promises and fables.

He is a soldier of fortune, a beggar, an actor, a prince,

He has always been searching for me,


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I wrote this poem a few years ago but it seems right to post it today, the 200th anniversary of Emily Bronte's birth.


She walked the Moors,

Her beloved Moors.

Her hair, long, black and tangled.

She gathered heather

For she loved the wild heather that grew there

And would only return to the house at night.


Her head was filled with a million dreams,

Thousands of wor...

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Stalker !

We've heard about stalkers,

Well I was wondering if I could be one myself ?

I mean could I stand all that rejection and waiting about in the rain,

Pretending to read a soggy newspaper,

Whilst trying to pass myself off as a detective or benefits inspector ?

I don't know because the only experience I've had of it

Is when I developed a thing about my boss in my temporary job.

I c...

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The Guitar Man

Music feeds the famine in his soul.

His guitar slung over his shoulder is like a machine gun, a giant phallus, a cross to bear.

He takes to the stage to a few ripples of applause,

A stifled cheer.

He has arrived, after much anticipation,

He is here.


How did it happen, how did he arrive here?

Through times zones, clouds and sunshine.

He appears sad, wistful,

Dressed ...

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She says ordering her groceries from Tesco's Online always makes her cry.

The miserable thick cut sliced ham

And sordid corned beef slices.

Always too much for one on their own.

Most of it thrown away.

I offer Grandma a hug.

No, no hugs now dear, she says.

She fears her brittle bones couldn't take the strain of a hug.

Though he's a good hugger, she says, that Gavin Westbroo...

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The Collar

I see you dear cat with a collar around your neck.

A collar I placed around your neck myself.

I realise your collar is a symbol of your slavery.

You are not just a cat,

You are a pet.

A pet !

The collar has a silver disc with your name and my address on it.

You are owned !!

Oh my God, I have become an owner.

An owner of a slavery puss.

I have taken away your identity ...

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John Cooper Clarke

He was a poet when it wasn't fashionable to be a poet.

When has it ever been fashionable ?

He took to the stage in a working men's club in the North

Where the audience were waiting for heavy metal and strippers.

And he came on, so skinny,

Big dark glasses and Bob Dylan hair.

And the working men threw bottles at him there

And booed him off the stage.

But still he returned wi...

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Loving The Enemy

Sometimes we fall in love with the enemy,

Even in a war zone.

We know we mustn't love them,

It's absolutely forbidden

Yet love is in our hearts.


Sometimes the enemy needs us.

They're starving and they wait for us to throw them crumbs,

To show them some kindness and affection,

In their cold, hard world.

They are dependent upon our patronage

And we need to be need...

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My father sat in his favourite chair

Immaculately dressed

I longed to run to him and climb all over him

But I knew I mustn't make a mess.

He only had two moods back then,

Fun and no fun.

Looking through the window I thought I saw two vultures on the opposite roof

But they weren't vultures, they were crows.

A very particular walk has a crow,

I saw one crow raping another ...

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Free Love

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

With patte...

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In The Tower

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 ...

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The Laughter Artist

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 ...

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That Thing In The Cupboard

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,

An entity,

A thing.

It's very tall

And nasty

With skeleton fingers that could tighten around your neck,

Could sneak up behind

And br...

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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...

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Can They See Us ?

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...

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Begging On The Underground

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,

Averted eye.

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...

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The New Love

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...

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The Tree

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...

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Moonlight Sonata

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...

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The Reality Star

Hey !

Make me a star

Right away

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


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A Shrunken Head Called Tantrum

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...

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Men Can Cry Now

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 ...

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The Ship In The Bottle

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...

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Sweet Kiss

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

And sweetie...

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Like A London Bus

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,


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The Wage Earner

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...

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Like Walking On The Moon

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,


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The Stranger

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 ...

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The Day Before

It was Christmas Eve

And he didn't come

He didn't come home

He wouldn't get home in time.

He was working,

Always working,

My father.

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...

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Kenny And Arthur

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...

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It Was Midsummer

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

For nothing.


He was thin,


I think he had a colostomy ba...

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The Unknown Soldier

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

And freckles,

Shot down by the military canon

His body broken

But his spirit still looking skywards

To where the startled birds fly.


He was unknown

No one...

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The Bound Bird

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...

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City Encounter

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...

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The Garden Shed

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,

Get awa...

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Mail Order Bride

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...

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Strong Vulnerability

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 ...

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The Traveller

Sweet music drifts in through the open window

As he drifts in

The traveller.

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...

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The Mad Aunt Of Doolin

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...

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Unrequited Love

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...

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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 ...

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Urban Myths.

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...

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The Grass

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...

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The Corn Dolly

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...

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The Letter

The Letter


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.

The ...

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The Man On The Corner

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,

Didn’t sleep,

Well, didn’t appear to.

At first men came with bottles and bricks

And threw them at him,

But he didn’t say anythi...

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  • 2017 - 2018 (46)

Recent Comments

Jane Briganti on Wild Heart (1 day ago)

Hannah Collins on Wild Heart (4 days ago)

jennifer Malden on The Tree (5 days ago)

jennifer Malden on The Collar (5 days ago)

jennifer Malden on Wild Heart (5 days ago)

Hugh on Stalker ! (10 days ago)

Colin Hill on Wild Heart (12 days ago)

Cynthia Buell Thomas on Wild Heart (12 days ago)

Taylor Crowshaw on Wild Heart (12 days ago)

Martin Elder on Wild Heart (12 days ago)

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