Long Johns Sally

In the morning half-light of the school run, gulls glimpsed on ice with my kids’ school in the background.
Tonight and tomorrow has been predicted to be as low as -12, which is pretty unheard of for Manchester. Bring on the school run tomorrow then. Long Johns Sally weather.

Advertisements

At This Time

From my poetry blog. Soon be Christmas.

Coronets For Ghosts

At This Time


A virginal shroud settles upon our abodes.
Fairy lights flicker in the long night.
Inside, all manner of songs and odes
are offered to acclaim our rite.
Those of us not overtly religious
indulge themselves out of tradition.
Those of us not openly pious
offer tacit prayers without petition.
But all desire to feel the joy
that shines forth from every child's eyes.
An augury, in innocence's employ,
that lifts the soul amongst the winter skies.
Though we partake in the gathered feast,
and survive the night imbibing wine,
we recognise, when all has ceased,
that part of man inherently divine.




©Andrew James Murray

View original post

Winter Coughs To Announce Her Presence

Officially it is not winter for five weeks or so, but the seasons sometimes blur the calendrical boundaries and fixed points that we like to attribute to them.

Yesterday was the first real cold morning of the year. Crisp and clear, a light frost covered everything, a promise maybe of what is to come. And, perhaps with a sense of the shift in things, it seemed that my Facebook feed was filled with photographs by people drawn to mark this liminal time.

An old school friend by the name of Dave Wright lives up in Inverness, in Scotland. He has two things up there that I don’t have: a decent camera and the northern lights.

He took this photograph as a cold dusk fell upon the land, he himself hunkered down for the night. The tree serves as a point of focus in an otherwise horizontal sweep.

image

And then, as he quite aptly described it: the moment the sky danced. 

image

Further south, across the English border (how we like to divide and designate, whether with land or time or people) another old school friend, Derek Bates, paused to take in the view from his works window. This was in Duckingfield, a town in Greater Manchester, with light struggling slowly over the bare hills, the low-lying land shrouded in mist.

image

To the east of Duckingfield, in my hometown of Middleton, the temperature stubbornly refused to rise. The mist appeared hesitant beyond the trees.

image

And then the school run beckoned, drawing us out of our heated home. Ignore that sun, it may as well have been a snowflake.

image

“It’s cold,” my daughter exclaimed as we hurried along the main road. “I can’t feel my legs.”

“They’re still there,” I replied. “Keep going!” 

Midnight, July

From my poetry blog.

Coronets For Ghosts

Midnight, July

We writhe
with a rage to know
the unknowable,

blind to great masses
that dance in dark orbits.
And a soft, summer wind
on a night beneath stars
is no balm.

From somewhere a whistle 
casts a line,

a fragile camaraderie 
in a world
fell silent,

where white moth-wing 
is riotous

and a spider's touch
carnal.



©AndrewJamesMurray

View original post

Indian Summer

Something new (and late) over on my poetry blog.

Coronets For Ghosts

Indian Summer

Indian Summer,
golden and implausibly charred.
Only one pot holds flowers 
to reach for the sun,
all of the others contain
withered wraiths
of long-spent blooms,
their calendar clocks
denying the possibility
Of these late September days.




©AndrewJamesMurray

View original post

Come On, Aileen

The first storm of the season, named Aileen, is due to hit tonight. For perspective, Aileen is no Irma, but still. I’ve taken down the hanging baskets and an outside lantern which is as much as I can do with no hatches to batten down.

The afternoon I spent working on a second poetry collection I’m trying to put together, while listening to a group from my favourite music period.

I have a friend who loves the eighties, and would instantly recognise the nod given by the title of this post. My own go-to listening preference stretches from the mid-sixties to early seventies. The Beatles; The Doors; The Kinks; The Rolling Stones; Tim Buckley; Cream; Cohen;  Dylan, I love all of these and more.

Being born in 1971 means that in my youth I’ve never been in vogue, musically. And don’t even mention my dress sense!

Listening to music helps when I’m writing. The group I was listening to today was Jefferson Airplane. Why do I like these?

Go and ask Alice. When she’s ten feet tall.