EAGLE’S WINGS AND CAT’S CLAWS by Marion Sharville ©

A soaring eagle may know nothing of God
or Capability Brown.
It does not admire the view.
but spears through the beauty,
lazered only on its prey,
the precision of its wings
appreciated only by man
…the imitator.

A suburban garden conceals a coiled spring;
deadly swift arc of hunter.
The terrified, scampering target,
fatally destined for play,
is not aware of an alter ego,
a cat curled before the fire;
a woman offering a saucer of milk.

A snail is deaf to the music of the thrush,
the thrush, blind to the architecture of the snail.
We alone, admire the view,
share the pain.
We, the graceless, the imperfect,
can, if we choose,
walk in another’s shoes.

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JUNE

June arrives in majesty, bearing
the standard of the longest day.
Her retinue of bees, butterflies and song-birds
pay homage, busying the skies,
composing the music of summer.

Travelling through the days,
she invites all to join the pilgrimage
of sun-worshippers hopefully
lifting their faces to be kissed.

She tantalizes with glimpses
of lazy days on sun-drenched beaches
but in this, our temperate land,
it often rains on her parade.

© Marion Sharville

THE ESCAPE

Auntie Bessie was a stickler
for the simple rules of life.
She said, one should not co-habit
with a man, if not his wife.

So she married Arthur Truegood,
who was tall and dark and lean,
but she very soon discovered
he was also cruel and mean.

As divorce was not an option,
she began to ponder how
her release could be achieved
without the breaking of her vows.

She reviewed it, to the letter;
richer; poorer; better; worse;
staying true to one another
until death; a life-long curse.

She began to dream of murder;
studied books; chapter and verse.
But, if caught before succeeding,
t’would put the cart before the hearse.

In the end, her one solution
was to drive him from her home,
so she took up music lessons;
played all night on her trombone.

Arthur, with his ear-drums ringing
rushed to get away quite far;
jumped a ship to cross the ocean.
… and now resides in Zanzibar.
© Marion Sharville

BE PREPARED

BE PREPARED
by
Marion Sharville

For once, I think I have this Christmas sussed.
I bought my greetings cards back in July.
To beat the post I knew I simply must
be ready as the festive time drew nigh.

I clamped them in a brand new rubber band,
prepared to be delivered by my hand.
The postage on them all would break the bank.
…I hope I have enough fuel in my tank.
Some will need stamps, who live so far away;
not seen for fifty years, if it’s a day.

If I don’t send to Lucy she will think
that I have shuffled off this mortal coil.
I’d hate to think that worrying might spoil
her Christmas dinner, parson knows that she
is definitely years ahead of me

and someone in New Zealand, I met once,
who, every year, a calendar he sends
and obviously needs a kind response;
I choose a card I hope, will not offend.

I’m absolutely shattered and I’m skint.
I’ve done up all my parcels; wrapped them well.
The Cellotape’has driven me to drink,
It’s good to have so many friends…I think

WHAT DO YOU KNOW?

WHAT DO YOU KNOW?

In the ignorance of childhood
the straight and narrow
was clearly defined.
I did not stray.

With the passing of the years
I acquired knowledge
and the ability
to get lost,
frequently.

© Marion Sharville

TREASURE ISLAND

                       TREASURE ISLAND

The foyer, a hive of parents; small off-spring,
in lurex and cardboard, are teacher-whisked away.
The hive disperses, the buzz settles, expectantly.

The curtain rises on parrots, rainbow-costumed,
feathered, hooded and beaked; back stage creations
alive now, tiny arms flailing in simulated flight.

Unsynchronised bemused infants search the shadowed
rows for their own safe familiar belaying-pins
as they straggle off stage, beckoned and cajoled.

Suddenly, an explosion of music; pirates and wenches
flood the stage as Treasure Island erupts with
whirling skirts and clashing swords, adrenaline fed;

a hurricane of colour; tempest of sound as Mrs Reardon’s
spring-loaded arms pound the school piano and nodding head
elevates the untrained voices to concert pitch.

Junior school, class two, sails the ocean. A dropped sword
and gingham bonnet lie abandoned on the wooden beach,
deserted now, awaiting hurried change of scene.

Jim Hawkins and Long John Silver, surrounded by small
mixed infants, gold and silvered into pieces of eight,
weave their way through the plot, upheld by the

unflagging crashing waves of teacher’s music and her wide
all-encompassing smile. Pride of achievement soaring
now on the tumultuous acclaim from the audience.

The foyer, a hive again with Mums and Dads and Grannies
waiting with coats and praise and McDonald promises.

© Marion Sharville

BROWN’S HOTEL

BROWN’S HOTEL

In Brown’s Hotel we sipped our tea, all the Danson Poets
…and me.
This hotel, we did admire, on being told the valet of Byron
had a wheeze, over biscuits and cheese
to open an inn, where folks could drop in,
…for a fee.
We could never have phoned to book our table
if A. Graham Bell had not been able
to make his first phone call, I don’t know to whom
but he might have used this very same room
where all the Danson poets and me
were eating off Wedgewood and sipping our tea.

The ladies boudoir was furnished in style,
no modern dryers; rolled towels in a pile,
soft and scented to pamper and please,
everything there to put one at their ease,
and Marie reclined with her usual aplomb
completely at home on the French style chaise-longue…

Then again, Rudyard Kipling, creating Shere-Kahn,
dreamt of the jungle in the peace and the calm
of Brown’s Hotel while sipping his tea
…some of his dreams could rub off on me.

Soft chamber music cushioned the sound
of chattering voices as we tackled the mound
of sandwiches, scones and fancy gateaux and oh!
it was lovely, all this to share with friends and to think long ago…
just there…
Agatha Christie sipped her tea
like all the Danson poets
…and me. © Marion Sharville

FATHER WILLIAM (A Parody)

FATHER WILLIAM (A parody)

“You are young, my dear fellow,” the old man said
“and your hair has a very strange hue.
Tell me, why does it stand up in peaks on your head
and why, on your brow, a tattoo?”

“You are old, Father William,” the young man replied,
“In your youth you used Brylcreem and comb
but now that the hairs on your head have all died
pray, with what do you polish your dome?”

“You are young,” said the old man, “with holes in your jeans
and the skin of your back-side shows through.
You seem to like wearing those tattered ‘has-beens’,
pray, what is the reason you do?”

“You are old, Father William and don’t realise
we go to the charity shop.
Your shirt’s back in fashion, it could be my size,
pray, tell me, would you care to swap?”

“You are young,” said the old man, “with long years ahead,
what to do, you can never decide.
By taking a long walk, it may clear your head
but your car is nearby, so you’ll ride.”

“You are old,” said the youth, “and you walk with a stick
yet your tongue is quite supple and swift.
When we get down the pub, if you still take the ‘Mick’,
on the way back, you won’t get a lift.”

“In your youth,” said the sage, as he shook his bald head,
“You should learn everything that you can.
Acquiring some wisdom, has a lot to be said,
so, try to behave like a man.”

“I am sick of your snide digs, now that is enough,”
growled the youth, “You’re a cunning old fox.
I can’t stand and listen all day to this stuff,
I’ll be missing the film on the box.”

© Marion Sharville

HOPE

A Villanelle

HOPE

Stay, stay the hand. The candle, let it burn,
the cradle of despair will grant no rest.
Don’t close the door against my sure return.

Curled deep within your misery, you yearn
to shift the load that’s put you to the test.
Stay, stay the hand, the candle, let it burn.

How slowly turns the mill, the ancient quern,
the product that results may be the best.
Don’t close the door against my sure return.

The greatest gift you have, you should not spurn,
enfolding bitter pith there is the zest.
Stay, stay the hand, the candle, let it burn.

I glimmer in the darkness, time to learn,
wait patiently the advent of your guest.
Don’t close the door against my sure return.

Precision timing is the prime concern,
I spring eternal in the human breast.
Stay, stay the hand, the candle, let it burn.
Don’t close the door against my sure return.

© Marion Sharville

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