Category Archives: beauty

Abstract Roses

P1180423

Floating abstract  rosebuds, achieved by swirling a brush of colour on a wet wash.

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‘I shall not wholly die’

On this date in 8 BC a great poet died. We know him as Horace. Much of his work is still relevant 2,025 years later.

I feel his best translator is Dryden, and I give you this little snippet from The Odes, Book One, IX:

Tomorrow and its works defy;
Lay hold upon the present hour,
And snatch the pleasures passing by
To put them out of Fortune’s power;
Nor love nor love’s delights disdain –
Whate’er thou getts’t today, is gain.

I am very grateful to the Muddy Archeologist for reminding me  of the date and getting me to re-read some Horace. And for giving us a brace of pertinent Horace quotes at the link below:

https://muddyarchaeologistcouk.wordpress.com/2017/11/24/radio-4-presented-by-horace-i-shall-not-wholly-die-horace-lives-on-on-the-anniversary-of-his-death-in-8-bc/#like-4740

Burning

English summers, often damp, can invoke long stifling twilights
Nothing landbound needlessly moves
Contrails crayon across the sky
So many, this close to London’s hub
Distantly, the buzz of a low plane, pleasure rider reaching up
Into the realm of the starlings as they susurrate
A car comes past in the lane droning away round the curves
Here the runway cross remains
The old tower still stands intact
As ponies munch and cattle chew
Larks lurk in the grass where bombers once turned
Occasional ironwork testament to hydrants and gun emplacements
War and weapons layered over by Nature and time
But, as the dark deepens, the lost come home
Tearing blazing incandescent screams rustle up drowsy birds
Look up and the dazzling burning blurs past
Metal screeches as it tears apart, each time the same
One last attempt at landing whole, at bringing the crate home
So wanting to see sweethearts and Blighty again
Then gone, back to oblivion
The burning pilot saluted you as he passed

Copyright © 2017 Kim Whysall-Hammond

This poem first appeared in Peacock Journal earlier this year.

 

 


Autumnal Slide

Autumn leaves colour lawns orange
Litter roads red
The long slide into the cold begins
Advent madness beckons
Like a siren
Calling us onto the rocks
Of family festivities, hidden lonelinesses, retail greed and envy
Soon rooftops will grow neon reindeer
Tinsel will be worn around necks at office parties
All too soon
It will be Christmas

Copyright © 2017 Kim Whysall-Hammond

 

I’m in Amsterdam this week, and so have left you this poem which rather captures my feeling about the next few months I’m afraid!

Translation

Lost between the words
is true meaning
the real message
perhaps the marriage
perhaps the correct diagnosis.
We all use metaphors
similes
when describing emotions and pains.
Doctors and spouses
should by rights be poets
for poetry conveys what is lost in translation.

Copyright © 2017 Kim Whysall-Hammond

A poem inspired by the quote:

Poetry is what gets lost in translation.
Robert Frost