Monday, 27 July 2015


On bended wing they swoop low, skimming waves; 
their mournful cries a perfect foil for the jingle jangle of pier head rides. 

They are the post sitters, people watchers...
 Still as statue fortune tellers who wait, with baited breath for picnics to appear 

Then, with one mad dash and scramble they strike...

Swooping on unsuspecting chip eaters, sandwich snackers, beach sitters
to snatch at tasty morsels from reluctant givers

laughing uproariously at their criminal exploits
before flocking out past foaming breakers 
to sanctuary 
in the pitch and swell of deep water waves

The end of the pier

We drove to the coast, in morning greyness; the heat of a still new sun barely cutting through cloud; causing goosebumps upon exposed flesh as I gazed a while at restless waves buffeted by unrelenting breezes, clawing at polished pebbles under spume. 

The pebble beach, remembered by the soles of my feet, yet different to my eyes; was all but empty, as huddles of thin clad souls took solace in sweaters, and headed to the end of the pier.

So we too trod the boards, worn by feet and time, under the watchful eye of gulls; stepping on shadows of antique fixtures and filigree fence work .


... and suddenly, there they were, in all their painted glory; champing at the bit for a hurly burly ride up and down then round and round; spinning faster and faster.....  the wonderful painted horses of childhood.

Close up their colours, still newly bright, vied with the jangling organ music of yesteryear, imploring we, the lookers on, to come and have the ride of our lives! 
Two small children, grins as wide as wind burnt cheeks hastily scrambled aboard, waving at the small assembled crowd as the music piped up and the horses began to trot..... and I secretly thought to myself  'yes, that is the very horse I would have picked,' as I turned away to seek amongst strangers a son searching for bigger thrills than those these horses had to offer.

Just then, the sun appeared, chasing past clouds and fragmenting the sea with ever changing hues; beaming down on neon rides, with gaudy flashing lights and the ever present thud of music at full throttle... a siren song for thrill seekers to come and test their nerve..... and there he was, my once small boy, high on mechanical arm, hanging in space, waiting to be flipped and swung..... whilst I, the reluctant onlooker and carrier of bags, quietly wished he were small again and the comforting swoosh of coconut mat on wooden slide  still  thrill enough for us all. 

Wednesday, 8 July 2015

crow road

I travel the crow road, watched from lampposts and overhead gantries by the silhouettes of dark sentinels; staring motionless as a carriageway of strangers drive in stop, start slow formation ....each in their own self contained world of metal, and morning thoughts. 

At times, leaving their lofty look-out posts, they flap in lazy circles, weaving through pylon strung lines or skimming low over stalled traffic; crowing raucously at we mere mortals stuck behind motionless wheels, staring past lorry backs to the congested road ahead.....despairing of ever reaching our journey's end. .... 

Once, for a fleeting moment, I watched as a young crow with outstretched wings drifted over the hedge and on above the snaking lines of traffic belching fumes and frustration....... then onward to the shelter of tall trees.
In that moment, we truly were traveling as the crow flies.