The things you have said

At seventeen you said,
You know I really think a lot of you
Well, you haven’t hit me yet
Dear Miss Whysall, but we’ll soon out a stop to that
Do you know how to call a waiter to the table?

At twenty one you said,
I sleep with a woman who sleepwalks Mars
Will you marry me?
I think you should go away to Oxford to realise your dream
Can we see the poverty stricken student line of engagement rings?

And so it has continued
and so I love you

Copyright © 2018 Kim Whysall-Hammond

A soppy love poem for my Cheese seller. It’s his birthday today!

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Winter at the hill fort

Bright winter pools lean against the
steep grassy ramparts
and trees are doubled by reflection.
Our path is not so much muddy
as at swimming depth
so we clamber up to where
large cloven hoofprints
embroider the rim.
A fat old oak
moss green, porcine, thick with time
blocks our way,
it’s toes scrabbling
pushing into slushy mud.

 

Copyright © 2018 Kim Whysall-Hammond

A poem is never finished, only abandoned

A ‘Found Poem’ from William Hazlitt – ‘Lectures on the English Poets’:

Poetry is imagination and the passions
whatever gives immediate pleasure
or pain
language which the heart holds.
It is not a mere frivolous accomplishment.
Wherever there is a sense
of beauty, or power, or harmony
there is poetry.
The rest is mere oblivion,
a dead letter.

 

Copyright © 2018 Kim Whysall-Hammond

We live on the high ground

We live on the high ground
Below us the water tumbles and falls, jumping over buried rocks
Water criss-crosses the land  eventually falling to the sea
Life is good here on the high, fresh soil and clear water
Healthy children, full bellies, long lives
Yesterday we sowed seed, laughing and singing
Today the sun is warm and the birds are singing for me
I try to put the birdsong into speech
As we knap flints from the coast
Mother is drawing a circle on the turf near the Family stones
A circle stones of to encompass Grandmother who closes in to death
We will cover her in the soil of home to keep her with us
Here on the high ground

Copyright © 2017 Kim Whysall-Hammond

 

Originally published in Three Drops from a Cauldron: Issue 11

Global

She flies in to a land below the sluice gates
under leaden  wintry skies
braving bone chilling, joint stiffening cold
to regain a lover and husband,
surprising family and friends
with a festive presence.
He cossets her adoringly
treasuring the time they are together
sharing memories of a hot Penang wedding  a world away
that celebrated a fealty lasting across oceans and years.
Tenderness and  connubiality,
happiness built on avocations and contrasts.
Cherishing time together with all those they love
partaking companionably
endearing us all to them.
Soon, she will travel back
to the other side of the planet
to summer heat and extended family
that now stretches globally
to a tall Dutchman.

 

Copyright © 2018 Kim Whysall-Hammond

For Nesa and Edgar

 

Neanderthal

Was it the red hair
that so entranced us?
The strong nose
on a strong young man?
Or that capable stocky young woman
who didn’t moan at first frost?
Where did we get our blues eyes from after all?
In the snows of almost perpetual winter
and at the warm shores of the middle sea
we met them, loved them,
raised their children.
And left them behind.

 

Copyright © 2018 Kim Whysall-Hammond