The street runs like a dark mist,
rain swiftly catches cold,
streetlights grab the sidewalk,
an embrace of stone necessity.

A hooded faceless figure
throws a still glowing cigarette
into the flowing gutter – phssst
– extinguished now
they ride the pipes together
to the underworld.

A lonely rat sniffs a roller-door,
whiskers slick against his cheeks,
I step aside and find the moon
on the other side of my umbrella.

Strains of cheerful chatter
beckon from just around the corner,
with purpose now, I stride afresh
towards the harbour of my love’s face.


A Ray of Light

You walked into the room – a ray of light,
your masquerade costume, my ray of light.

You whispered, “my beloved”, my heart soared,
Your face, a precious bloom – a ray of light.

Unworthy feelings banished, I flew high
Above the deepest gloom, your ray of light.

We lightly tripped together, love’s pavanne,
Breathless; into my womb, new ray of light.

And those who doubt love’s transforming magic,
Sweep them clean with a broom, heart’s ray of light.

And if dark days descend on you, my love,
Then I would expel your doom, dear ray of light.

My soul is bound with crimson threads to yours,
Many summers on life’s loom – love’s ray of light.


Do visit dVerse for Samuel Peralta’s (aka Semaphore) wonderful post on the Ghazal as a form. This is the first time I have attempted to write a ghazal. It was very challenging to say the least.

Here is an extract from Samuel’s explanation of the form:

“Ghazals are beautiful poems, originating in Arabic verse from the sixth century, written traditionally about poetically physical or spiritual love, with a melancholic air of separation or longing.

Made famous in the Western world by the modern translations of works by Rumi and Hafiz, these translations unfortunately have been the source of much confusion over what a ghazal is.

Classic ghazals have a strict form and structure – similar to a Petrarchan sonnet. In trying to be faithful to the ancient poet’s words and expression, translators had to forego the structural framework of the classical ghazal in English.”

 This is my attempt to remain true to the form. I couldn’t get my name into the last couplet

FormForAll: On Ghazals and the Ghazal Sonnet

Gypsy Flames

This poem is a homage to love and Leonard Cohen – the muse brushed me as I was listening to “Dance Me To The End of Love” – Craig posted a link to the song, I listened transported. The link is here

Violins burn
with a flame of pure love,
a true wedding
he gazes at her;
an exquisite longing
quilts all who partake
into a love that swirls
from the edges of time,
rising from ashes
of imploded worlds
in flames green, orange , violet,
naked hands stroking,
touch palm to palm
with quivering smiles
and tender eyes
blinking back tears,
longing, wanting to drown
in wild gypsy flames
dancing on steppes
swallowed by sky
spiralling starlight
crowning the moon,
and the singer sings
lala lala la lala lala la
and the chorus joins in
cradling our souls…

Tangerine Maze

Tangerine spiders
trapped in amber
walls of the maze,
passages slide
slick under
my fingers.
I tread barefoot
on soft anthracite
wending my way
stepping out
a mother’s prayers
to the heart
where a waterfall
tinkles with
the dreams
of  a young bride
seeking a true love
in her groom
that remains
long after the last
rose petal falls;
that reveres
fecund hips
with ripening seeds
and sees beauty
in  bare branches
and thorns.


Crowns and incense dreams,
ancient incantations…

She sees herself
in a pill box hat
and creamy frock
alluding to an epoch
of Audrey Hepburn elegance,
with inequality and innocence;
a bouzouki band
communal platters
on long tables,
generations arm in arm
dancing matrimony’s blessings
for the couple…

May abundance, peace
and love embrace them
all their days.

Happy Ending?

Island retreat:
cerulean waves
caress pebble beach cliffs
with gnarled faces,
castle ramparts
poke through green
on the ridges;
a keep for a lady
with wheaten hair
distractedly spinning,
dreaming her prince
beyond the rim
of the waves.

Lightning crackles
to the drum
of galloping hooves,
motley clouds gather;
gulls wheel screaming,
‘mine’, as she hears
footsteps ascending
the stairs, her heart
fills with dread.

A thump on the door,
the spindle scuttles
across the bowed floor,
she looks around
with eyes wide blue,
her mouth a delicate cavern,
studded with pearls,
as a melodious tenor
says, ‘open the door,
I’ve banished the
wicked magician,
you are free… to be mine.”