Category Archives: poem

When?

When this all settles
I will walk along a stony beach
Stepping across rock pools
Looking for fossils
Life has been here before and will be after

Nothing was ever certain
Life was always frail
A bubble has burst
But we will float again
Life is all we have, treasure its small joys

When this all settles
We must mourn the dead
Unpick our mistakes
Grieve for lost chances
Life for us should never be the same

We have another danger
That may take us all
This is a rehearsal
Now we must save our world
Our grandchildren must live and thrive

Copyright © 2021 Kim Whysall-Hammond

Present Future

The machine just doesn’t stop
but clambers across and smothers real life

capturing privacies, swapping
small unregarded freedoms

for dopamine flash rewards
and a watered down electronic

recognition of sorts.
The screen’s constant siren call

replacing small intimacies
for others not yet evaluated.

Interconnected yet further apart,
we stumble on into the present future.

Copyright © 2018 Kim Whysall-Hammond

First published at https://www.thesunlightpress.com/…/20…/10/30/present-future/

Remembering Lockdown

It was almost a living thing, large and smothering
that pinned us down and
which seems to have shed hairs everywhere,
I’m still finding them, clearing them away.

Days melted into each other
alone in this vessel of a house
plunging deep depths of fears and anxieties
climbing swallowing waves to see clear skies.
Gradually ending more and more days with a muttered
“That was a good one, wasn’t it?”.

Absorbing ourselves in the minutia of gardening
seedlings as companions, hope for some future
and canny planning for food supplies.
A returning shopper asked what is it like out there
as they washed clothes, hair and body
and we wiped clean all they had brought back.
No eggs this time.

Copyright © 2021 Kim Whysall-Hammond

Remembering the first UK Lockdown, in March 2020, an unsettling frightening time.

We are not out of the woods yet. This past week we have been isolating with a sick adult son who was in contact with a confirmed Covid case. We are waiting for test results, but the labs are slow due to 1.6 million poeple isolating this week and getting tested!

At least in full lockdown we were allowed to leave the house for exercise — I’m feeling very confined.

Fret not too much — so far, the effects are light.

linked to – earthweal open link weekend #75 | earthweal

Dawn Creeps Across The Land

Dawn creeps across the land
Shining her pale light into nests
Causing baby birds to call for food
Dormice to rub their eyes and blink
Ants to speed up their hurrying and scurrying
She reaches up to wash the sky with pale blue
And a hint of rose at the east
And , as a special treat today, the west
Smiling to herself as the world awakes
She feels a certain self satisfaction as the Sun
With a near audible plop
Detaches itself from the horizon
Then like any other woman
Readies herself for a busy day

Copyright © 2017 Kim Whysall-Hammond

First published by Inbetween Hangovers:

https://inbetweenhangovers.wordpress.com/2017/01/24/dawn-creeps-across-the-land-by-kim-whysall-hammond/

Uncle

Waking up with Nanny in her soft double bed
the room white and pink with swans and roses
Sunday morning and you would bring milky tea
Hot in her best rose gold china cup and saucers
we would sip, little fingers raised as you left
Before we too rose

Later, your Saturday visits to our house
bringing a bounty of colourful comics to read
And a secret pocket of sweets, for Mum not to see
How my brothers and I took you for granted
Never noticed the shining love in your eyes

Your hand grasping mine in supplication
As they wheeled you, protesting to surgery
from which you did not return, your
faltering loving heart finally stopping
Under the anaesthetists care

Copyright © 2021 Kim Whysall-Hammond

Dreaming of seeing you again

You tread on the tail of my eye
carving crosswise through the crowd
that flows into the station
we greet with hugs, kiss cheeks
talk of our priceless opportunity
of a week together
after so long apart

Later, rinsing sorrow away
we linger out
a hundred glasses of wine
the clarity of close friends filling small talk
a lucid moon keeping us awake
and after we’re drunk, we’ll sleep
all heaven our blanket, earth our pillow

Copyright © 2021 Kim Whysall-Hammond

Inspired by Chinese poetry, this one is for our best friend, away in Amsterdam. Our first trip abroad will be to see him, but we do not know when that can be….

They looked and turned away

They looked and turned away
Londoners afraid to interact
With the girl sitting, weeping
On a stinkingly hot day in the city
Exclaiming that she had gone blind
Oversized suitcase abandoned near her feet
My feet
Someone pushed a cold drink into my hand
A woman’s voice comforted me
A stranger joined me on the step, asked where I was going
Told me that a long hot walk carrying a load
Had affected my sight
Sat until, miraculously, my sight returned
Then left
Pulling myself to my feet
I retrieved the offending suitcase
Slowly made my way to the Tube station
Continued my journey, moving from London to Oxford
Changing university, leaving friends and home city
Aiming for a Doctorate, I should have noted the omen
For I found loneliness and failure

Copyright © 2016 Kim Whysall-Hammond

Fist published by Silver Birch Press:

https://silverbirchpress.wordpress.com/2016/09/26/they-looked-and-turned-away-poem-by-kim-whysall-hammond-when-i-moved-poetry-and-prose-series/