Archive for the ‘Personal Favourites’ Category

From the day that we are born we’re encouraged to conform

And to grow up in the way that we’re expected.

So we don’t step out of line and we never rock the boat

For we fear that if we do we’ll be rejected.

We hide our inner selves and put on a masquerade

And live our lives as others think we ought.

It all becomes a habit, from the time that we were born

That’s the only way that we were ever taught.

We accept what we are told and our minds are so controlled

Our freedom is the price that we are paying.

And the judgements that we make, the decisions that we take

Are a product of those games that we are playing.

Do we ever stop to ask if the things we’re taught are true,

Or are we just perpetuating lies?

Copying the people who copied someone else

And seeing things through other peoples eyes.

It seems an awful shame that we feel the need to fit

In a mould that other people have created.

It’s as if we live a lie from our birth until we die

To conform with what society’s dictated.

So teach your kids to think things through before they tow the line.

To question all they read or hear, and they’ll just grow up fine.

No need to play a part in life that isn’t really you.

Because it’s what you’ve grown up thinking you’re expected to

Strip away those false veneers that you have taken on.

Unfettered by convention now, the goose becomes a swan.

And only now we realise that it was such a sin.

The masquerade had ne’er displayed the beauty that’s within.

Copyright John Marsh 2012


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Think of me when the morning sun, rising

as it has done for ages untold,

from the hills in the east, works its magic,

turns the sky and the bay to pure gold.

In that shimmering moment at daybreak

I have watched and my heart’s taken wing.

Transfixed by the beauty that morning

and sunlight on water can bring.

How fleeting that moment, how fleeting.

It is gone in the blink of an eye.

But it’s printed inside of my head now,

those hills and that sun and that sky.

So if ever you witness such beauty

with the sky and the sun and the sea

and the hills and the morning sun rising,

and it fills you with joy; think of me.

Think of me when the hedges awaken

and  the spring turns the browns into green,

and the countryside wakes from its slumber

and the signs of new life can be seen.

When the bluebells all carpet the woodland

and their perfume lies sweet on the air.

When the gorse adds its yellow to hillsides

that are green with new grass I’ll be there.

Where the burn tumbles out of the hillside

or the river flows down to the sea.

Or the loch, like a mirror, reflects clouds and sky

look around you for there I will be.

On a cold and damp day in the autumn

with a mist drifting in from the sea,

If you hear the sad call of a curlew

echo over the bay, think of me.

Think of me when you see a red sunset

settle over a blood red sea

and a white-breasted seagull is calling

the way that it once called to me.

And you see twilight’s shadows are stretching

ghostly fingers across the lawn

and the bats spread their wings and the nocturnal things

all take over the garden till dawn.

When the moon, rising up in the heavens,

bathes the sea and the sky and the land

In a silvery sheen, think how often I’ve seen

silver sky, silver sea, silver sand.

If you picture a beautiful garden,

nestled close to the side of the sea,

full of birdsong and flowers. I spent happy hours

in one such as this. Think of me.

Copyright John Marsh

This beautiful poem was written when John’s marriage broke

up and he went travelling and had to leave his home and garden 

by the bay in Scotland.

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If you can keep your head when all about you

are losing theirs and blaming it on you

If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you

but make allowance for their doubting too

If you can wait and not be tired of waiting

or, being lied about, don’t deal in lies,

or being hated, don’t give way to hating

and yet don’t look too good nor talk too wise

If you can dream and not make dreams your master

If you can think and not make thoughts your aim

If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster

and treat those two impostors both the same

If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken

twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools

or watch the things you gave your life to broken,

and stoop and build them up with worn out tools

If you can make one heap of all your winnings

and risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss

and lose and start again at your beginnings

and never breathe a word about your loss

If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew

to serve your turn long after they are gone

and so, hold on when there is nothing in you

except the will which says to them hold on

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue

or walk with kings nor lose the common touch

If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you

If all men count with you but none too much

If you can fill the unforgiving minute

with sixty seconds worth of distance run

Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it

And which is more you’ll be a man my son

Rudyard Kipling- 1895

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Do you remember that hour
In a nook of the flowing uplands
When you found for me, at the cornfield’s edge,
A golden and purple flower?
Heartsease, you said.  I thought it might be
A token that love meant well by you and me.

I shall not find it again
With you no more to guide me.
I could not bear to find it now
With anyone else beside me.
And the heartsease is far less rare
Than what it is named for, what I can feel nowhere.

Once again it is summer:
Wildflowers beflag the lane
That takes me away from our golden uplands,
Heart-wrung and alone.
The best I can look for, by vale or hill,
A herb they tell me is common enough , self-heal.

copyright C. Day Lewis 1948

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Heartsease I found, where Love lies bleeding
Empurpled all the ground:
Whatever flowers I missed unheeding,
Heartsease I found.
Yet still my garden mound
Stood sore in need of watering, weeding,
And binding growths unbound.
Ah, when shades fell to light succeeding
I scarcely dared look round:
Love lies bleeding was all my pleading,
Heartsease I found.

copyright Christina Rossetti 1893


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There is a flower I wish to wear,

But not until first worn by you,

Heartsease of all Earth’s flowers most rare;

Bring it; and bring enough for two.


An infusion of Heartsease is said to mend a broken heart.

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Our hearts may break when loved ones die,
We live, we love, we often cry,
Though time may heal, it can’t replace
That look of grief that clouds our face.
But once I heard some words so wise,
That dried the tears behind my eyes.
Imagine this; a calm blue sea,
A sailing ship, so fine, so free.
It sails away and looks quite small,
Until it can’t be seen at all,
But even though the vision’s gone,
Its chartered course still carries on.
We’re privileged to see it go,
To other shores?..we’ll never know.
Copyright S.Stone 5/7/16


Reminds me of a special time with my Dad.

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