silent smile

artwork by phil burns

silent smile


you danced
and drifted into my life
like a ghost with a silent smile
graceful and slightly amused

you laughed at the obvious turmoil
you created in my heart
and elsewhere

you asked me to make a love song
so I wrote this one for you
you gently mocked me
that the lyrics
of my love song didn’t rhyme
I said hey give me time

then
like a ghost with a silent smile
graceful and slightly amused
you danced
and drifted out of my life



Click here to hear the poet read his words:
https://ceayr.com/2022/09/18/silent-smile/

Posted in Poetry | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

vision

artwork by carolina sartor

vision

more and more often
as the years stumble past
I catch a glimpse
of a flicker
of a shadow
just outwith the range
of my vision

is it a memory
made real
of someone long gone
whom once I loved
and still do
telling me
that I too
am not forgotten

or is it merely
further evidence
of a decaying body
and fading eyes
that means the world
becomes day by day
more hazy

my belief is as always
stronger on the side of magic and mystery
and less inclined to the dull but reasonable explanation
and as a Scot
whose culture and history and literature
are steeped in restless ghosts
and some say mythical monsters
I prefer to embrace my otherworldly visitors
to thank them for their time
and to look forward to
our next meeting
wherever it takes place



Click here to hear the poet read his words:
https://ceayr.com/2022/09/11/vision/

Posted in Poetry | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Scotland in November

copyright c e ayr

Scotland in November

looking back
it seems quite obvious
we were doomed
before we started

so very far apart
culturally and
geographically

but we had so much
together
laughter
and passion
and all that love

so many great times
and those special moments
I’ll always remember

but the passion faded
and the laughter died
and the love
just wasn’t enough
to cross the distances
or hide the differences

deep down
it still lingers
and sometimes
briefly flickers
but nothing can hide
the harsh truth

you were July
on the Côte d’Azur
and I was
Scotland in November

Click here to hear the poet read his words:
https://ceayr.com/2022/07/03/scotland-in-november/

Posted in Poetry | Leave a comment

I wrote a poem

copyright c e ayr*

I wrote a poem

I read a poem yesterday
it nearly broke my heart
it spoke of lovers loved and lost
they lived too far apart

I read a poem yesterday
it said she won’t live forever
but she makes the world a better place
please don’t let me outlive her

I read a poem yesterday
it made me think of you
when the colour of my world was gold
before you turned it sad soft blue

I read a poem yesterday
it told me what I’ve got to give
all the splintered thoughts I’ve yet to think
and those dead years I’ve yet to live

I wrote a poem yesterday
it tells of our first kiss
and the wondrous time we spent together
and how it ended just like this

* from the Robert Burns Birthplace Museum, Alloway, Scotland


Click here to hear the poet read his words:
https://ceayr.com/2022/06/26/i-wrote-a-poem/

Posted in Poetry | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

bouchon

artwork by phil burns

bouchon

I’m standing at a bus stop
twenty minutes from home
the reasons don’t matter
no sign of scheduled service
already long overdue
the traffic is nose to nose
mile after mile
barely moving
nothing happening
other than tempers rising
like the temperature
because mid-June at La Foux
near St Tropez
is blindingly hot

then overhead
I see the swallows
in uncountable numbers
swooping and swirling
dancing and diving
in playful pairs
and incredibly uncoordinated
but never conflicting groups

when I think that
we consider ourselves
the most advanced species
the highest level of intelligence
on planet Earth
I laugh in pure delight
at our absurd arrogance and stupidity

Posted in Poetry | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

bird

copyright c e ayr

bird

waves rumble
round the rocks
in November sunshine

I sit
gazing at the Mediterranean
my mind
far away
across the planet
or somewhere
deep inside myself
when I see
overhead
a solitary bird

a waterfowl
perhaps
a Canada Goose

a memory stirs
I start to smile
and
my heart sings

Click here to hear the poet read his words:
https://ceayr.com/2022/07/10/bird/

Posted in Poetry | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

back to Glasgow

copyright c e ayr

back to Glasgow

as I walk the beaches
of the Côte d’Azur
or swim in the warmth
of the Mediterranean
my favourite of all seas
my thoughts still sometimes
surprise me by drifting
back to Glasgow

I write every day
and most stories are situated
in Medville in the here and now
but on occasion
I base a story on my early days
and my mind wanders
almost unbidden
back to Glasgow

so much of what I left behind
when I slid into exile
still lingers back there
so when I waken
in the frightened hours
and the darkness tears at me
it’s then that my heart aches
and begs that I journey
one last time
back to Glasgow

my life is part poetry
and part fiction
with only one certain truth
I never will
I never can go
back to Glasgow

Posted in Poetry | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Shadow in the Mirror

copyright c e ayr

Shadow in the Mirror

I glimpse the shadow in the mirror
as soft and dark as midnight air
my eyes are slow to see the outline
of the space where once you were

you took the sunshine when you left me
I live now in constant chill
I purged all trace of your existence
but your spirit lingers still

your face still hides behind my eyelids
your laughter echoes through my dreams
you don’t fill my every moment
I guess that’s just the way it seems

I understand you’re gone forever
that I won’t hold you close again
none of these things are a problem
the memories of here inflict the pain

the day will come when I’ll forget you
and my heart will stumble free
no more sorrowed tears of torment
and no water in the sea

my eyes are slow to see the outline
as soft and dark as midnight air
I glimpse the shadow in the mirror
it’s just the space where once you were


Posted in Poetry | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

leaving

copyright c e ayr

leaving

it’s still numpty o’clock
as the plane clambers awkwardly
out of Edinburgh
the sun creeps from the Forth
where the river meets the North Sea
showing the three great bridges
in silhouette

I smile
knowing that this afternoon
I’ll be home again
in my own corner of Paradise
on the Côte d’Azur
and my mind drifts
back over the past week

the highlight as always
was the day spent with my grandson
we walked along the Clyde
two miles in spring sunshine
from city centre
to the Riverside Museum
where we lunched
and revisited the once-familiar exhibits
before wandering through Kelvingrove
on our homeward trail

but there was also the kindness of friends
in Broxburn
on the tranquil Union Canal
and in Ayr
with its broad beaches
between two very different
but equally beautiful rivers
and its history of our Bard

I don’t know that
I deserve their unstinting kindness
I do know that
I can never repay it
and as I look down
at Scotland
disappearing beneath the clouds
I realise that
once again
I leave behind me
a flake of my soul

copyright c e ayr
Posted in Poetry | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

the last time

copyright c e ayr

I didn’t know

I didn’t know
it was the last time
I’d ever hold your hand
or
I’d have clasped it longer
and more consciously
and treasured every touch

I didn’t know
it was the last time
I’d ever hear you laugh
or
I’d have tried harder
to be funny
to prolong the music

I didn’t know
it was the last time
I’d ever see your smile
or
I’d have done more
to please you
to bathe in its light

I didn’t know
it was the last time
I’d ever kiss your lips
or
I’d have wrapped you
more tightly in my arms
and savoured your sweet taste

I didn’t know
it was the last time
I’d ever smell autumn
in your hair
or
I’d have known
that winter
would be an eternity
of biting cold
and aching loneliness

Click here to hear the poet read his words:
https://ceayr.com/2022/04/24/the-last-time/

Posted in Poetry | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment