Saturday, 16 June 2012

Hide and Seek

Rain augmented, the garden sucks the happy soil, strength in verdant green,

Bees fly figure eights around the wooden heron, waiting by the secret pond unseen,

foxglove spears split the air, virile, regal pennants border the path,

as the blackbird finds a shallow puddle, fluttering in his welcome bath,

poppies abundant, their plump red pepper flowers lolling, too heavy for the hairy stems,

a dragon’s treasure, a djinn’s bright wishes, the flower beds spilling with uncut gems,

the rambling rose, white and yellow, slowly drags itself across the border,

an opaque barrier, an insect haven,  a coat of thorns, a silent warder,

flowers blinking open, pouring scent into the ether, delivered by a summer breeze,

and the sun peeking between the clouds, count to ten, play hide and seek with this coy tease.

Words and pictures Mel Melis © June 2012




The painted sneering leer, teeth bared,

the siren screams, terror accessories,

Stuka diving, payload emptying,

the silence of light, a moment

before the wall of air hits,

sound boiling inside your head,


Your mother rises, tentative,

unsteady, sapling in the rubble, picks

you up, her seed,

your own hand grey like hers,

as the dust settles, she sees

your eyes open

and her eyes stream, relieved, defiant,

channels in the grime.


©Mel Melis, June 2012

Friday, 15 June 2012

A Rose in your garden


Within the unkempt mat

of last years dead rosehips

brown stranded, thread hanged,

is a sultry rose

pink to its core, each petal an arc of joy,

vivid in the sadness of your time,


the rosewood outlives,

thorny, twisted, an old woman’s hand,

cupped to the ear,

waiting to hear the old song,


a smile plays on your rose bud mouth,

you hold your breath, watching through the shutters,

waiting for his arrival, his midnight serenade,

….you loved this time of year.

©Mel Melis June 2012

(from mum’s garden)


Tuesday, 5 June 2012


The trauma, gasping, born,

pulse pounding, louder than the land,

behind the eyes,

the churning heartbeat, constant, a memory,

heard through liquid,

seen, felt in the womb, secure

in the dark, when the water baby

first opens her eyes,

red is safety, red is mother,

red is sky at the top of the hill,

red is love, the warmth of the sun.


June 1st 2012, Mel Melis ©


Running helps with inspiration. It’s a form of focus, the physical aspects, although sometimes painful, take care of themselves. The pain and burning of lungs and muscles touch something ancient which takes over. The sound of my own bursting heart a metronome, a discipline to follow, the plod of feet, the gasps of breath. It’s consuming. It allows the mind to contemplate, to calculate, to wander. I don’t know, maybe it’s some sort hunter gatherer thing which switches on, something missing in modern life which we all need to do. I crave that solitude and near exhaustion up on the hills.

There was a prize to my run, I was running to the top of Pegsdon Hills, I knew the sun was dipping below the horizon. I could sense the light was a beautiful orange/red as I ran in the shadow of the long hill, on the wooded path. The chalk steps were steep, I haven’t conquered them yet, I’m not fit enough, I stopped half way up and wheezed, my legs burned and wobbled, I could hear my pulse and heart raging, blocking out all other sound, but I stumbled on, upwards, to be bathed in the suns orange light.

In retrospect it’s a bit contrived, but at the time it felt powerful. As I weaved my way through the ankle breaking rabbit holes and scrapes, through the squat hawthorns, their white flowers covering the thorns, pressed and wind battered against the hillside, I thought of childbirth. The experience of the run talked of this to me. From darkness into light, the trauma, the pain, the blinding bewilderment at being thrown from your secure environment into this new world.

But what a view.