Serenity “haiku”


a heron stands

one leg in the reeds

he reaches for his oboe


a contented carp

blows bubbles

puckering his lips


a lotus unfolds

her petal wings

butterflies waft incense


a busy dragon-fly

is a rainbow

who caresses time


clear crystal ponds

reflect pure light

whiter than snow


a pendant drop

hangs from the gallows

of a moment


a ripple stretches

across a dewy pond

and yawns sleepily


a reed bends

in the harsh winds

which soon, too will pass


a moorhen dives

hungry for breakfast,

a croissant with butter


the spirit churns

all of the milk

to spread on toast


a hungry falcon

hovers in the wind

seeking a morsel


the rain falls heavy

the ducks rejoice

water off their backs


a Rōnin waits

for he has no master

else his heart


he sits seiza

and watches only walls

for there, is wisdom.

too much blood in him

those tongues torturing truths

ever seek the serpentine

eavesdropping ears

to propagate and to enfoul


eager seekers of dominion

search out a collar

with which to bind him

and enslave



they doth now look


to find a lever to apply

when shall the three, we three

meet again

and exert


and in their febrile cauldron

ingredients they mix

to alchemize a plan

most highly justified


oh, the imagined cunning

that precocious understanding

strange deeds afoot

nearly there


milord the case

it is clear

the asylum seeker shall

a straight-jacket be granted


lock him away

exile him

be rid

ne’er to darken doors again


we milord

are august

and totally right

and thoroughly justified.


and the seer sighed

for naught have they learned

IQ high

wisdom low


same shit

different day

The Other Bank

On the other bank
out of reach
Pride’s grimace
forbids it

Not a finger
can span
nor lift
that spell

No salve
nor ointment
for the bitter
Juniper berries

The ambitious debris
slate black scree
weeping cold
on the mountainside

The fitting seizure
of a moment passed
a crushed portcullis

Not an ounce
of blood
most vital
to the eyes

And that egret
eats sticklebacks
once again
and forever

Armitage Shanks™

Dressed in his resplendent uniform
and his white silken gloves
each with three buttons
he shines porcelain daily

He places ancient scrolls of parchment
in the sacred reading cubicles
he wets the terracotta dreams and waxes
filling all the phials with ointment

He tinctures the air with incense
and places floral offerings in the vase
he cleans each shining altar with love
adding Naptha where it is needed

Cleanliness is his obsession
and soon they will visit his shrine
the one he cares for day after day
spick and span, spick and span

He knows his place.

Soon the Temple doors will open
and they will flock for confession
for some welcome release on their journey
just passing through, passing through

He knows that they cannot see him
untouchable the Brahmin in his Soul
does what he must always do
he shines porcelain daily

He buffs the vanity mirrors
and fills all the machines with fayre
adding blue pills and plastic
which perhaps, they might later wear.

He knows his place.

And when his shift is done
he reads Nietzsche in the night
and Lao Tze at dawn
he worries at the fading of his sight

As the eight bells toll at five
once more he becomes alive
he shuffles off the duvet warm
and reveilles at his alarm

Dressed in his resplendent uniform
and his white silken gloves
each with three buttons
he shines porcelain daily

He knows his place.

Dhyāna “Haiku”

primroses and daisies
wait the passing snow
and then smile

a Fletcher finds
for himself
the feathers in the Dao

silent peaceful roads,
bare hedgerows
six rooks sing in a tree!

a reed in the Dao
bends attentively
a heron looks East

I am a grain
I am nothing
and yet, I am a beginning.

ghosts whisper
their ancient stories
scaring the living

night in her slippers
sneaks along the lanes
getting closer

a candle sways softly
a forgotten tune,
it sheds a waxy tear

the naked willow
combs her hair
and considers

a gnarled old oak
staunch and dependable
waits table

bluebell champagne,
no need of ice

tapestry spiders
catching tears

walk on cornflakes
with toes
the Milky Way

each blade
on parade
shaving the dew

panther sun
in cloudy whiskers

on vulture peak
I held
his flower

a collared dove
feels not a chain
and coos

unhurried twigs
the blackbird

a white feather
surfs the breeze
on its own

dragon’s breath
patterns in silk

the holly wafts
scarlet berries
and coy blushes

pink shirts
the boardroom collars,
flamingos in a pond

a pile of washing
ready to hang,

how skinny
the end of day shadows
give them rice!!

wanting to be chaste
and again

hair in the plughole
piss on the floor
no more farting!

the knot of not
has you,
so very tired

more twinkling
a firmament
of eyes

in a colander
spaghetti words

dawn chorus
a smoker coughs

behind the sofa
under the cushions
two-pound coins!!

cows sunbathe
and a bonnet

small blue eggs
at the bus stop
over easy

the rooster
flapping his wings
so profound

preening parrot
objects his cage
he will not leave

the fog embraces
with silence

the compass
of hush
in all the quarters

Arrow “Haiku”

in the cavern of time
water drips
and in No daylight

it argues with rock
and in a way it,
eventually wins

drop by drop
it points the way
out the subterranean

for water has no aim
and is not an archer,
two fingers at Agincourt

a Fletcher finds
for himself
the feathers in the Dao

he sees how they
are so zipped together
and he fingers them

and when the string
is so, so very taught
there is a release

but before that
the pretence and the tension
is but a game

in the cleft is written
a song unspoken
waiting for voices

shame would it be
if never hear
were they, to listen

in the cavern of time
water drips
in No daylight

The “Haiku” of Protection

ladybirds huddle
in the window frame
a testudo of spotty shields

in the church nave
a goat at a font
strokes his beard

on the tombstone
here lies hope
she died, being clever

two pennies for Charon
already over the eyes
old man smells of piss

the walking dead
are unaware
of their passing, still

a large gaudy bus
filled with sardines
each ego as big as next

teaching the already wise
harder than diamond
used to grind

an expert and a
which is the wiser?

at his desk, the actuary
counts the pennies
other side of the river

inflated balloons are
blown in the wind
the high voltage pylon, waits

at Sainsbury’s
a trolley full of folly
long checkout queue

which is the asylum
the seeker asks?
the fool nods wisely

a pride of mothers
4 by 4 heaven
they always know best

vinegar, salt, dried fish
and sulphur dioxide
preserves the truth

which is the asylum
the fool asks?
the seeker now nods wisely

A Walk Into The Woods

Sometimes when things seem odd and life a little crazy or hard, all one has to do is go for a stroll in the woods.
It is often just the salve that is needed.
On the petals
And the peals
Of laughter
Towards the forest

On the rafts
Of disbelief
Rowed by derision
Deeper still

A ramshackle hut
With cosmic ceilings
And willow curtains

No proud bastions
No thrusting chests
No chains of gold

Only the infinite now
A momentous moment
Pregnant with star-dust
So empty and full