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The Delicates

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They chatter life and love by the water’s edge
then dive into the shimmering blue
With thoughts of painting ice cream clouds
or bottling the phosphorus moon
Daylight is for dreaming 
or cooking up a stew
The waking hours are for birthing art
or making love in the hot afternoon

Tonight, there’ll be a gathering at the Dolphin café
with wine and smiles in generous measures
mosquito nets billowing in the thin dusk glow
pour another glass, play another song and they’re dancing again
There’s a candle on every table, a fire in every heart
to roam the shrinking globe, to colour those bursting souls
fill those notebooks, songbooks, sketchbooks
with feelings, memories and inspiration

The night is young and it's endless
O, how The Delicates relate...

They’ll race through the crooked streets of this harbour town
back to plain white rented rooms or the caves at Matala
where the poems write themselves on twisted sheets
love is free and easy, the way it always should have been
And their wide eyes brim with empathy
sensitive and porous to all that’s happening
wisdom gathering like a storm, to burst upon a page someday
travelling friendships are fleeting but pregnant with meaning

Each cloud above might yet be a song 
or a novel or a painting
carried through the decades 
in the hearts of lovers like me
The Delicates created such indelible art
Fifty years gone by and I smile
as I let their songs fill my car and heart
on long hot summer days

They’re knowing and naive
the way I’ll always feel…



This poem was inspired by a phrase in Bryony Partridge's poem Silent Wash.


◄ Peace In The Garden

Snow Day ►


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Tue 8th Aug 2023 13:44

Hi Kevin, what a great comment to receive. 😃 Thanks so much for that little window into your world.

Joni's 'Blue' is the album I've listened to more than any other and I gladly draw on it for inspiration still. Your friend was obviously very smart indeed. Having visited quite a few of those islands (like Crete, Hydra etc) I can well see how they'd get the poetry flowing and the paintings painted.

Tell Fong Li I say hi and am honoured she enjoyed the poem. Take care, Tom.

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Mon 17th Jul 2023 10:04

Thank you Stephen and Stephen. Glad you enjoyed this one.

I read the phrase 'The Delicates' in Bryony's poem and wondered what a poem with that title might be about... shortly after I was listening to Carey by Joni Mitchell and the thought of her (and many other artists) staying in Greece in the 60s seemed like something fun to write about.

Thanks also to Hélène, Holden, Tony and John for reading and the 'likes'.

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Stephen Atkinson

Sun 16th Jul 2023 09:35

An inspiring poem, Tom, with some wonderful imagery! 🌈👏

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Stephen Gospage

Sun 16th Jul 2023 08:19

A fascinating poem, Tom, and your reading of it is outstanding.

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