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He is a Ghost, like the Colour Green Once Was

He is a Ghost, like the Colour Green Once Was

The man no longer remains,The one who planted the seed of doubt and deceitDeep into the soilSo ready and fertile,Of the minds of other menWho denied the crisis we have faced and lost.He is a ghost, like the colour green once was. But I am reborn, re-rooted, growing...

Covid-19

Covid-19

Let me share a poem first and then I'll share my thoughts. Perhaps the poem will make more sense then. Let me know your thoughts. How are you coping? The Virus   Life is an inevitability inside my garden Just as death has become one on the outside. Like the green...

I would…

I would…

Over the weekend, I was lucky enough to listen to poet Roy McFarlane read and perform some of his amazing poems. I remarked, before the session that I was focusing on prose rather than poetry but that changed after the event. I left feeling inspired and the following...

A whole other thing!

A whole other thing!

So much has happened since my last proper blog post. It’s been a whirlwind of activity and now I am left exhausted but happy. The big news is that my book MIRRORS, published by Holland House Books is finally out! The print edition came out in January and the launch...

A chapter from Suva and Kyto -In Search of the Gate

A chapter from Suva and Kyto -In Search of the Gate

That night Suva’s limbs ached. She lay awake feeling her way through her body with her mind. She began at her toes and moved her way her up. There was no part of her that did not hurt as she moved them, but the ache in her heart was less. There, the pain was replaced...

Chapter 12-Lost Song

Chapter 12-Lost Song

Hi All, Below is a work in progress. I'm not sure I even like it. I would love your feedback on style and content. Is the dialogue a bit rubbish. 1st person present tense-does it work? It's been a while since I shared any kind of new fiction with you all, I'm a little...

In Awe

You see me how, now? You see me put my clothes on, A tired ritual in the dark of an autumn morning. After children, after brushing my teeth, After waking from another life. The life where I was someone not as I am Known to you. I think back to when I was unknown to...

Broken Wings

Broken Wings

There is a woman who saves butterflies with broken wings. I’ve heard It takes just five minutes. Not as absurd As it sounds. I imagine her fixing brown to blue Or blue to orange, or any other hue Will suffice as long as it fits and Madam Butterfly is fit to fly. With...

Journey to Hyderabad

Journey to Hyderabad

  I begin this post by stating that this is the beginning. The statement is obvious, but I feel that by saying it, or writing it out loud, it makes it real. Sincere. Honest. Epic. The journey to Hyderabad started rather serenely with my brother picking us up at a...

Moth Miracle

  Today, I fell in love With a moth; Small and brown. A pale and helpless triangle, As it lay upturned on the bottom of a pan. It grappled and struggled with six legs and antennae flailing Whilst the very things which gave her flight, Bore her down, damp and...

Being

This post is about being. I am. I am alive, and I am blessed. Little things accentuate the nature of my existence, round the edges, sharpen the lines; flourishes of detail, for example: Blue overshoes.; like blue suede shoes but for the side of the pool. boredom. The...

Grotesque

Grotesque

Grotesque The click, clack of my many legs on the wooden floor. The miniscule slide just before the clack Is probably the worst part. It would offend my human ears! Oh, the irony! My human ears? They would not even hear! But me in my current insignificant form, I am...

Blundering Boris and the damage he’s caused

Blundering Boris and the damage he’s caused

It’s the summer holidays and I am content on so many levels. I have a good job, I have a home which I love and above all a wonderful, supportive family. This year, we’ve had a glorious summer. We’ve had hot, lazy days, barbecues and picnics and the temperature has...

The Nymph

There’s a tree in my neighbour’s garden And inside, I see a nymph. She’s trapped within That rough, grey bark. Frozen. Heart still beating, Eyes still seeing, Mind still racing. But they will slow soon too. Years later she will forget. Another form, she’ll take; A...

Mother’s Day 2018

Happy Mother’s Day. To Ma, I know you now, like I’ve never known you before. I am you. Your insecurities, your strengths and your weaknesses, your loves, your hopes and dreams are all mine now. They exist for my daughter and son and every day, I wonder how you managed...

Success in the face of failure

  This year, yet again, I am taking part in NaNoWriMo; that famed writing competition that goads you, that wills you and challenges you write a 50,000 draft of a novel in 30 days. It's a seemingly insurmountable task and yet, this year, with a full time job, two...

Bloody Pumpkins Everywhere!

Orange Don't you just hate Halloween? I am the Scrooge of All Hallow's Eve or whatever the f*#£ they decide to call it. This Americanised, bastardised evil which is upon us means nothing to me except, of course, entitled children demanding sugary treats, sometimes...

Slowing down, holding hands and saying thanks.

Slowing down, holding hands and saying thanks.

Starting somewhere new is always daunting. There are new routines, new people, new priorities and new anxieties; in short, there a myriad of new challenges to face, whilst still trying to keep a semblance of self and self-confidence intact. Recently, we moved house...

This too, shall pass…

There are times when we look at the world and feel despair. Events over the months of 2016 and part way across the threshold of 2017, have given us justifiable cause for such malaise. Trump will be president within days. The Syrians are either forgotten or vilified,...

Photographs and savouring memories

There is an elderly lady who lives in a small but adequate flat in the Begumpet locality of the city of Hyderabad. She is surrounded by her family; her son, her daughter-in-law and her two grandchildren. She wears a red sari and her hair is white. Her skin is the...

The Itch

As I work and toil, like real everyday people do, I can't help but let my mind wander sometimes. I'm back in a routine. I'm getting things done, the class I work in is working well, until management tells me it is not (which I hope won't happen in the near future.)...

Stagnation

Above is an illustration for a poem I wrote called Stagnation. The artist who created this beauty did so most generously and I feel that this is a gift. I am most grateful. Goncalo is a genius. Please visit his blog, Alienato https://goncalojuliao.wordpress.com To...

What have I become?

I was talking to a colleague at the end of the last academic year, before I began my experiment of coming back to teaching full time, about the importance of work-life balance. I mentioned that what I had learnt in India had changed me fundamentally, as a person, that...

A poem about refugees

A poem about refugees

"The sea is two faced," he said, fastening the orange life jacket to his chest.  "Hunger is eating our stomachs," she said, wrapping her phone in plastic.  "They call it the Aleppo sling in the market where we sit illegally," she boasted, "They use it for...

Kytö and the Broom Tree

The legend of the Broom Tree is featured in the Tale of Genji, a Japanese epic of sorts, famed for being the first modern novel ever written, and by a woman, no less, called Murasaki Shikibu in the… Source: Kytö and the Broom Tree

Once more, unto the breach, dear friends…

There is something strange, eerie about having started a book. I have begun a story and Suva and Kytö are right in the middle of things, but I’ve left them in their worlds, frozen. I wonder if they continue without me or if they’re waiting. I imagine they’re waiting...

The beaches in Bali have black sands

The beaches in Bali can have black sands; Hot volcanic ash glitters and gleams as galaxies float underfoot. Rattan basket offerings litter the views where small gods eat and run. They might stay a little longer and linger In the temples where tourists can only defile....

Settling back into it

The night we arrived, we were too tired to think about what we had done. We were too relieved to worry about the cold. We collapsed into our beds in my mother’s house and slept as if we had truly been laid to rest. Then, at 4am, the sun started to rise and our eyes...

In between times

In between times

There are times when it’s important to step forward into simpler times. We’ve taken a break from the daily grind before we head back into the throes of it. We’ve been in Hyderabad for over a month now, with a week’s break in between on a tropical island. Time stops...

Last Days and First Days

Our last day in Calcutta coincided with the Vivekananda Road Flyover disaster. The bridge collapsed and crushed over 20 people, injuring many more. Two days after the event, people are still trapped under rubble. Friends are marking each other and themselves as safe...

Certainly not here anymore…

That’s it. It’s done. We’re wrapping things up and moving on. Our time in Calcutta is coming to a close very, very soon, by the end of the month in fact. This, then, is my final blog post from Calcutta. Next stop Hyderabad and then…who knows. I think, like all...

Stagnation 

In my mind, I have come to understand A path must only be pursued if one is travelling forward or backward. But I find myself floating above. I've bought balloons and weights and tied myself up in knots. My feet are tethered to the weights, of course and a string...

Frog

Frog

Suva padded quietly, barefoot to the old woman’s door. Kajol was on the bed, pressing a saturated handkerchief to a shrivelled brow. Low moans emanated from the old woman and Suva knew at once her grandmother must have been very unwell. She had never seen her like...

It’s the taking part that counts…

So this year, I'm taking part in National Novel Writing Month again. Last time, completing it caused such a high, setting a target, reaching a goal, it was exhilarating. So, I'm doing it again. I'm taking advantage of the time and space and bandwidth to be able to do...

Stand Back it’s a Party!

Diwali's coming up. We're in a quieter part of town now but I'm still not that calm, spiritual person I wanted to become. I'm looking forward to the dressing up and the lights but please no loud bangs! My new little fur baby won't like it!