Friday, 24 August 2012

Commute


Six forty seven from Southampton Central
Eight twenty one into Basingstoke town.
Commuter pact coaches on Wessex Electric
Will speed like a bullet past meadow and down.

Graces and manners are locked in the brief case
Those left behind are the weak and the lame,
No quarter is given no toes left untrampled
The bruises will heal, you'll be glad that you came.

Like a cattle stampede with the ramrod behind you
Swear all that you will but this train leaves on time,
Only one seat remaining, the one in the washroom
The others were taken two stops down the line.

No personal space there is nothing between you
Each breath you take has been swallowed before,
The man in your face had had garlic for breakfast
His flatulent dog has been sick on the floor.

You’re suddenly there with a screen like a banshee
Dragged from the train on a river of bone.
You're dirty, bedraggled, breathless and tired
You'd forfeit a ransom to turn and go home.


Thrust in repugnant tubes we chase
The bogus lures of rodent race.
All mesmerised by golden grails
As Magog's bestial rule prevails.
Yet deep within the spirit springs
And raises souls to higher things.
To curse the god that would enjoin
Us sell ourselves for tainted coin.



Copyright© Alan Gilbert 2012.

Thursday, 2 August 2012

Contagion


You're the poison in the marrow
You're the harbingers of war,
Like a pestilence upon us
You're the oil on the shore.

You're a cancerous contusion
You're in every tribe and creed,
Like a virus in our children
You're the maggot in the seed.

You're the liar in the logic
You're the fracture in the whole,
Like a bitter, spiteful canker
You're a shadow on the soul.

You're the bigots and the racists
You're the evil at the gate,
Like a proselytising serpent
You're the colloquy of hate.


Copyright© Alan Gilbert 2012.

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Miasma



Draped in death black barges drift
Beneath the leaden winter sky
While all around dank walls of fog
Besmirch the hulks and blind the eye.
No name or legend on the prow
That might the pallid corps reveal
And on the barren morbid deck
No steersman stands before the wheel.

What wills these barks to wend their way
Demands them to maintain this course?
There are no sails nor oars to row
Along the towpath moves no horse.
They navigate without a flaw
No waves or ripples fore or aft,
More silent than the agape grave
Move on these damned infernal craft.

Unseen by cottage, farm or mill
Past bends and tangled rafts of weed,
By rotting trunks of fallen oaks
That never once their course impede.
The dingy feted shrouds of mist
Like layers of corruption cling
And as this dismal curtain falls,
The sweetest voice begins to sing.

Copyright© Alan Gilbert 2012.

Sunday, 8 July 2012

Desolate


We are spirits in a chrysalis
Ephemeral as a dream,
Reaching out in desperation
Touching shadows in a stream.
Ever seeking true communion
Barely stifling the scream,
For the dread of isolation
And the spaces in between.

Building arches over loneliness
From altars deep inside
To the paradise we squandered
In our arrogance and pride.
And our only consolation,
Every soul has wings to fly
Out of cages through the clouds
Above the sorrow and the sigh.

Copyright© Alan Gilbert 2012.



Friday, 15 June 2012

Vistas

Pictures in a candle flame,
Manikins in bows and frills
Lightly dance in flickering steps
Their stately formed quadrilles.

Visions in a solar flare,
Rampant radiated power
Hurricanes of scorching wind
All worlds and lives devour.

Images in calming hues,
Crimson ribbons waft and wend
Train the mind to placid flight
Our darkest fears transcend.

Copyright©  Alan Gilbert 2012.

News of poetry competitions.

Here are some useful sites for those who like to enter competitions
 http://www.pw.org/grants?gclid=CLL6kNSv0LACFUcKfAod2imnZQ
http://www.unitedpress.co.uk/free-poetry-competitions/
http://www.poetrykit.org/comps.htm
http://www.poetrysociety.org.uk/content/competitions/
http://www.forwardpoetry.co.uk/
http://www.poetrylibrary.org.uk/competitions/


Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Avalon


I long for you and Avalon
Beloved nirvana born of dreams,
In blessed reverie we'll walk
Her verdant woods
By chattering streams.

Across the lilac scented field
Toward the lake where catkins grow,
And Avalon will be our world
The deepest joy
We'll ever know.

I long to spend the sultry nights
In prurient or soulful need,
Each gentle, sensual caress 
Will voice our
Amatory creed.

There are in life uncertain stars
Whose course is never ours to know,
But we have sworn by Avalon
Our cherished love
Will thrive and grow.



Copyright© Alan Gilbert 2012.

Tools for poets

Here are some links to useful tools for poets.


Rhyming dictionary.
http://www.rhymezone.com/

General resource site with many useful links
http://www.poetry.org/default.htm

Dictionary and thesaurus.
http://www.websters-online-dictionary.org/
http://thesaurus.babylon.com/hat

Syllable/word counter.
http://www.wordcalc.com/

Poetry form and structure.
http://www.poetry-online.org/poetry-terms.htm

Free copyrighting service. 
http://myfreecopyright.com/

A free and very good writing application that has served me well.
http://evernote.com/



Poetry websites.

Here are some places to find lots of poetry.
http://www.poetryfoundation.org/
http://plazapoetry.com/
http://bygosh.com/poems/index.htm
http://maryourmother.net/Poetry.html
http://www.pw.org/magazine
http://www.strangehorizons.com/


.Publish your work.

Useful links for those who may be thinking of self publishing their work.

http://www.ehow.com/how_107987_self-publish-book.html
http://www.iuniverse.com/
http://www.lulu.com/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Self-publishing
http://dogearpublishing.net/the-competition.php


Other self publishing houses are available.
To have your work published in periodicals, magazines etc. This site is a good place to start.
https://duotrope.com/
http://www.poemhunter.com/


Friday, 1 June 2012

Green Willow Haiku.


Weep willowy tears
Spilt innocence in amber,
Gracing bounteous yield.

Copyright© Alan Gilbert 2012.

Wednesday, 23 May 2012


Caravan


This crisply muted
Calm Sahara night,
Belies the advent 
Of the furnace sun.
Amid our bivouac 
Of coloured beits
We stir from dreams 
To sweet oasis dates.

Our caravan decamps
To race the dawn,
On ancient trading routes 
Towards the sea.
By Adrar, Timimoun 
Proud In Salah,
Hence we shall follow
Our nomadic star.

You wear an abaya
Of damask black,
Your mouth is veiled
In lattice woven silk.
Your beauty glows
Lit by the purple sky,
Now overwhelmed:
I turn from you and cry.

Copyright© Alan Gilbert 2012.

Monday, 14 May 2012

Way Beyond Words





My new poetry book is now available from iUniverse, Amazon and all on line bookstores. See customer reviews on Amazon.  Two five star customer reviews on amazon. 


Title: Way Beyond Words. (Poetry on reflection)
Author: Alan Gilbert.
Published by iUniverse. 
Paperback. 978-1-4697-5163-4
Hardcover. 978-1-4697-5165-8
eBook.       978-1-4697-5164-1
Available from amazon, iUniverse and all on line bookstores. 
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Way-Beyond-Words-Poetry-Reflection/dp/1469751631/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1336568198&sr=1-1 
http://www.amazon.com/Way-Beyond-Words-Poetry-Reflection/dp/1469751631/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1336568535&sr=1-1
http://bookstore.iuniverse.com/Products/SKU-000542557/Way-beyond-Words.aspx

Tempest




Alert the watch all hands all hands on deck
Aloft and set the storm sails, make them fast,
Then rig the ratlines tight from stem to stern
The seas are up we're heading for a blast.

Unfast the boats and toss them to the storm
The dervish wind will crush them into splints,
Then lash the forty cannon to the deck
No man will rest so each surpass their stints.

You surgeon's boys now to your station go
Make keen each edge and mark your master well,
If God has grace to gift to you the dawn
You will no longer fear the wrath of hell.

There is no time to pray no place for fear
No tine to ponder on the hours ahead,
Now everyman must make his peace alone
I fear that fate has marked us living dead.

Copyright© Alan Gilbert 2011.

Saturday, 5 May 2012

√Član Vitai



So pervades the heart
That never could grow old,
A sanguine stream on fire
Unquenchable amour
Unwilling to withhold.

How the spirit flows
Impervious through time,
Insatiable desire
Restless in restraint
Yet quietly sublime.

Copyright© Alan Gilbert 2012.

Monday, 23 April 2012

Whisperers, written and read by Alan Gilbert.

Dusk


Creeping silently
Soft fingered dusk,
Treads light upon
Moss painted walks.
Cloaking potting sheds
And greenhouse glass,
Then dulls the sheen
On apples at a pass.

Spreading effortless
Along the rows
Of beans and berries
Cardamom and thyme.
To cool the scented spoil
Of lawn mowed hay
Where languid tabby’s
Scratch the night away.

Stepping nimbly
Over lily ponds
Where keen eyed fishes
Hunted summer flies.
Now in the welcome shade
From day long heat,
An alabaster dancer
Cools her tired feet.

Copyright© Alan Gilbert 2012.

Thursday, 19 April 2012

Boilermaker


My dad made the boilers
For warships and liners,
Huge prisons of steel
For the scolding hot steam.
There was pride in each rivet
Every pattern completed,
When he told me his yarns
I could see his eyes gleam.

Some days he would take me
To stand at the dock head,
He knew all the names
And the places they'd been.
I imagined us sailing
The ships he was part of,
But asbestos killed him
And ended the dream.

Copyright© Alan Gilbert 2012.


Tuesday, 3 April 2012

Arid As Atacama


These times of low reception 
Unnerving me somehow. 
The frailest self-deception 
Falls painful on the brow. 
Piercing through the armour 
Which never should allow, 
A fear you may forget me 
For now, and now, and now. 

Atacama has a cactus 
That thrives without the rain, 
No wells or rivers feed it 
Yet still it makes its gain. 
Now with this veil upon me 
And no way to explain, 
My soul's an arid fragment 
Becoming dust again.

Copyright© Alan Gilbert 2012.

Sunday, 26 February 2012

Candy


Candy you're a heartful  
The child of a gypsy star,   
Gazing through a frosted web    
Describing who you are.      
Many think to know you  
Seeing what you want to show,  
Spinning ripples on the sea   
Unfathomed depths below.     

Breathless in confusion  
Chords and colours fill your mind,    
Unscripted scores of fantasy  
That leaves their world behind.  
Candy they can't see you  
Letting light come in between,
They're dazzled in a spectrum  
Misinterpreting the dream.   

 Copyright© Alan Gilbert 2012


Sunday, 29 January 2012

Fog

A fog bank rolled in
Chased by a west wind,
Muffling breakers
Familiar roar.
Darker than midnight
Cold as a warning,
It crept from the ocean
And crawled on the shore.

Silently tumbling
Deep Into the city,
Cloaking the street lamps
Familiar glow.
Touching the people
With icy wet fingers,
Featureless shadows
With nowhere to go.

Grey is the pallet
In shades of distortion,
Revealing confusion
Nothing seems real.
A pale orb is rising
Sun in ascendance,
Strangely diffusing
A dawn that's surreal.

Copyright© Alan Gilbert 2011.

Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Four in a Row




Four in a row, four in a row
Creep where the toxins overflow,                 
From chemicals that ooze below    
Just gargoyles from the undertow       
No cattle, wheat or rye.  

Three in a row, three in a row
Sleep where the poison rivers flow,
Breath softly as the tumours grow
No scar so friends will never know  
Your fearful lullaby.     

Two in a row, two in a row
Still learning less and thinking slow,     
Don't ask again but watch the show  
Prime time your daily mind tableau  
Don't ever question why?   
   
One in a row, one in a row
Wrapped in your faith but even so  
No miracle will save you though    
The world is blinded to your woe    
And deafened to your cry. 

Copyright© Alan Gilbert 2012.

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

Think of a Time





Think of a time you stumbled in your life
Feeling a way as sightless in the night,
Falling through empty spaces day to day
Begging some unknown spirit for the light.

Think of a day that dawned to find you lost
Wandering lonely in some crowded street,
Everything won was at too high a cost
Then given away, surrendered in defeat.

Think of the day the darkest one of all
Finding the fight no longer worth the prize,
Peeling your mind like paper from a wall
Abandoning hope to feel redemption rise.

Think of the moment, you alone may know
What lit the flame that kindled deep inside?
A letter, a call a thought from long ago
Or sudden love that turned that awful tide?


Copyright© Alan Gilbert 2012.

Sunday, 1 January 2012

Fields of Lavender




From a spring above the fens    
A chuckling rivulet descends,  
That squabbles with
The rocks and bends. 
Cascading, tumbling
Where it ends    
In fields of lavender.    


Freed from caverns underground  
Crystal waters leap and bound,     
Through Forests deep
Their laughing sound 
Replays and echoes
All around 
Bright fields of lavender      

Weary now, I close my eyes
Sleep cradles me as water sighs,
Far, far from slate grey winter skies
I dream of lavender.


Copyright© Alan Gilbert 2011.

Saturday, 24 December 2011

Whisper

Amid the urban turmoil
Of a rush hour city street
A cacophony of diesels 
Joins a mass of stomping feet.
Mix the rattling departure
Of the elevated train,
As the local band convention
Starts out marching once again.
There's the rolling of the thunder
Country music from the stores,
Heavy hammers of the builders
Who are laying office floors.
Overhead the jets are flying
Leaving vapour in the sky
And a chapter of the Angels
Ride a hundred Harleys by
.
As you shelter in a doorway
From the racket and the rain,
I can hear across an ocean
You are whispering my name.





Copyright© Alan Gilbert 2011
.

Sunday, 18 December 2011

I am a Knight


I am a knight valiente
An armoured cavalier 
Who’s Chivalrous in combat
Oblivious to fear.
I ride upon a warhorse
None mightier was seen,
Prepared to fight a thousand
For the honour of  my queen.

I am a lowly minstrel boy
No land  or title mine,
I play the melodies I write
For bread and watered wine.
But I will walk the darkest paths 
Dare swamp and shifting sand 
To entertain the courtiers
And win my ladies hand. 

I am a graceless gypsy lad 
Who’s far beyond the law  
I live by wits and thievery  
Am vilified  by all.
The ladies in the market town 
Who shun me every day 
Burn candles in the casement 
When their masters are away.   

 Copyright© Alan Gilbert 2011.

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