Swallows

Blue Heart - Copy

for Tracey Lawrence

*

She scans the sky for swallows in the Spring

Down in the Rowdey gardens, by the shed

When I was low and January dead

She held my hand and helped my spirit sing

I saw her soul, a swallow on the wing

Still flying high when other birds had fled

Such loving kindness in the words she said

Such gentleness on earth is everything

She’s in the garden, sitting in her chair

And laughing as the swallows in the skies

Make witty patterns in the Wiltshire air

Like little arrows shot across The Vize

I think that I shall just leave Tracey there

With tears of joy and swallows in her eyes

*

© Gail Foster 2nd May 2017

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Not In My Name

 

*

I wonder how she feels today

The Muslim girl I spoke to on the bus

The girl who had so many things to say

About how she feels free and safe with us

I wonder if today she feels the same

Dear child of the warm Damascan breeze

Cry God and Allah we are all the same

Not in my name, not in my name, please

*

© Gail Foster 23rd March 2017

They Never Went To War

IMG_3138

*

They never went to war; they stayed at home

The young, the old, the unwell and the dead

The women who were not allowed to roam

The men who tilled the fields and baked the bread

Those sat in darkness waiting for the rap

Of letterbox, and soft white feather fall

The silence broken by a dripping tap

Dark shadows cast by street lamps on the wall

The little lads who ran behind the train

That took their fathers off to certain death

Who waved until their arms ached in the rain

Who ran until their lungs ran out of breath

Old men who yearned for youth; just one more chance

To feel the blood flow, hear the battle cry

To wear the uniform and take a stance

To stand with other men, to fight and die

The crippled and the mad, the deaf, the blind

Escaped the fate of many thousand men

Some angry that they had been left behind

Some thankful that they’d never fight again

 Women, who with their sleeves rolled ploughed the land

Lit candles, raised the children, hid their tears

Made ammunitions with a careful hand

Kept watch and saved the night time for their fears

So many stayed at home, and stayed alive

And suffered pain and loss, regret and guilt

That they were left, that they were to survive

Within the house such sacrifice had built

Their many names are not inscribed on stone

Those sorrowed souls, so haunted by war’s ghost

Were left to stand and mourn the dead alone

Listening to the trumpet sound the post

*

by Gail

Corbyn’s Muses

Corbyn's Muses

What ridiculous term will the media come up with to describe the women in Jeremy Corbyn’s shadow cabinet?

These are my thoughts on the matter…

*

Don’t call us Babes, such nonsense just confuses

We’re equals standing side by side with men

If you must, then coin us Corbyn’s Muses

Inspiring hearts and minds with voice and pen

We’ve got here through integrity and toil

Intelligence and knowledge of the game

We’ll labour endlessly for British soil

Don’t denigrate us with a silly name

by Gail

Serious Women

For serious women everywhere, and for Philippa

serious women

Serious Women

*

Some of us have faces

That are less inclined to mirth

Mapped upon them traces

Of the journey from our birth

Inscrutable, mysterious

The face our mother gave

Inherently quite serious

Disconcerting, grave

See us in the street and we are

Focussed and unblinking

Eyes fixed on horizon far

Minding our own thinking

We’re not sad, or mad or bad

It’s just the face we’ve grown

You don’t know the life we’ve had

So frankly, mind your own

Control your neediness and fear

Your urge to poke and pry

We save for folk who hold us dear

The twinkle in our eye

“Give us a smile, darling”

“It hasn’t happened yet”

Trite words to get us snarling

“Excuse me?  Wanna bet?”

To the endless trivial

Comments offered everyday

We respond with the convivial

“It’s just arranged that way!”

*

If you don’t understand my face

How dare you stoop to diss it

My arse is well imbued with grace

So kiss it

*

by Gail