Tree Song

Mother Tree, Memory Tree, Tree of Time and Tree of Music, Tree of Love and Tree of Sorrow, Tale that’s told In motionless mime. I threw rocks at the apple…

The Friendship Tree

now’s this Christmas tree of fairy-lights. From forest-dark to bright-lit square this tree has sailed across the sea – a present sent for friendship’s sake, from them to us, for…

The Christmas Tree’s Secret

Artwork from the Christmas Tree banner in 2016, designed by Peter Austin Gather round: I’ve a tale to tell. If you’ve ears to hear, then listen well. In the frosty…

The Kindness of Trees

The tree dropped a pine. And every time a girl got mad, The tree roared in the wind.   In the dead mid-winter night, The tree blew a hello, goodbye;…

The Secret Song of the Tree

Artwork from the Christmas Tree banner in 2015, designed by Kate Austin   Step closer, please, and hear my song. It won’t take long, it won’t take long. I hold…

Icicles Round a Tree in Dumfriesshire

…spiral of touch and go, Lightning licking a tree Imagining itself Aretha Franklin Singing “You make me feel like a natural woman” In basso profondo, Firing the bark with its…

Family Tree

I’m just going to start here. At its trunk. It was                       not so long ago my name slipped into our family tree like the silken soil slips into my…

How I’ll Decorate My Tree

It was still very far from Christmas When my momma said to me: Tell me, Precious, what you going to hang On our Christmas tree? I said: the fairy-lights that…

The Apple Tree

…time to convince me to come down: I wanted to live there in the tree forever. I’ve never stopped climbing trees. I know now that youth doesn’t leave: you told…

Decorating the Tree

I am your tree. I grew in the north, Year by year in the seasoned earth. Sift, white shift, snowflakes, stars: I was storm-shelter for carolling birds. Dear creatures, what…

Conversation with a Myoman Tree

pestle And the tree said it was a myoma. The tree asked me who I was So I told it I’m a Hustlement – I go to gauze. The tree

Ber Lin

…forest). Draw the character for ‘tree’, and then another character for ‘tree’, like this . And as for the ‘ber’, I had to look it up in the dictionary. Another tree

Maple

a small tree As if I would not grow They named me after an old tree As if I was not young They named me after a living tree And…

Felling

broke in the end before the tree would. So he left, and for a while I was alone in the house, though each day the tree leant closer to the…

parallel of a dead oak

a tree dissevered dissevered a tree                                                roots worms                                                                          clear in green water  a deified root                                                     deified worms                                                                          a tree dissevered                                                                           translucent in…

A tree

you can do many things with this tree paint it with an original colour or sketch it in your mind as if it were a river cut it down with…

Tree Talk

…eye can follow. We are water, wood, sunlight; We are tree. We sense everything: The languid pop of mushrooms at our roots, The prickle of new leaves stiffening on our branches,…

Christmas Moon

The moon looking down at the carol singers. The moon looking down at carrots for the reindeer, wishing he could eat them….

The Game: Christmas Day, 1914

It is so cold. The lines of this poem are sinking Into the unforgiving mud. No clean sheet. Dawn on a perishing day. The weapons freeze In the hands of…

The White Trees

decorate their home for Christmas, thinking of the spring to come. Someone else brings faerie lights for the streets. The children look at them … smile! When Christmas is over,…

I am the Tree

I drink Earth’s blood, Eat the light, Host the snow, Feel winds flow, Fledglings’ flight. I’ve heard the night owl’s hoots, Mushrooms balance on my roots Where flowers used to…

Undress

There is an ash tree behind this house. You can see it from our bedroom window. If you stare at it for long enough, you’ll see it drop a leaf….

Growing a Tree: Five Songs

1. I’m a sapling And I want to know the answers. Why do my leaves move when the wind blows? Why does the sun shine so brightly And why does…

Look into My Lights

…grandma by candlelight slipping chestnuts into stockings, as children nest in my scent with dreams full of presents. Look into my lights. Now I’m a Christmas tree. Now I’m a…

A Therapist Learns about Nesting

One bird from fence to grass to fence to holly tree to wall to grass to holly tree brown flicker, lick of red a second still an eye. Crows come…

Birdwatching

My window is a book of birds. I draw back the curtains and there they all are, scribbling their lives in the trees. Today seems to be about magpies, how…

I didn’t like him when I first saw him

…say,  I was indifferent to him on the nineteenth  But mad in love by Christmas day. I even said those sacred words  Those holy three:  I love you.  And you…

Wish List

I woke up from late afternoon slumber Caught you, hands curled in action Back arched against the Christmas tree Eyes gleaming towards the waning December sun You clutched a Yankee…

Feast

…a leftover diamond to win: a treasured crown of turkey for one, or a partridge hung from pear-tree heights. another’s satisfied by a plucky pigeon; it roamed the streets, pecking…

Love in the Time of Cold

Before the dawn that walks the northern morning from the moors; before the swans sing winter on and cough the fog upon the ponds, we ask that through the Christmas

Winter Solstice

I will not write about Christmas lights garlanding the tree, how steadily red blends to sapphire  emerald  gold, how strong the little bulbs must be to throw their dancing hearts…

Clare Pollard

…judge for The Poetry Society’s Popescu European Poetry Translation Prize 2015, and was the Trafalgar Square Christmas tree poet in 2019 in The Poetry Society’s Look North More Often project….

Jack

Every family has one somewhere on the tree, slipping out late with a cardboard suitcase, enough to pay his passage. Or slamming out, cracking the plaster, waking neighbours who keep…

Heading home, dusk

Heading home, dusk, in the park the homeless chew their apples. In the bright, big, empty bank lights flicker on the plastic Christmas tree. A dark window catches her image…

Layers of Kant reveal:

The clouded mind is Kant without his hair extensions, his eyelash curler. We met last night and he was like Christmas, sad, a tree. Kant told me to toss my…

The Gift

Christmas-time I settle into the shape of tree –                                   alive, sharp, resin rising. Hope shines and darkness flees and I can see a future as clocks chime their late hour…

Burlap Man

…his claws are tree branches that won’t stop growing.  His tail was eaten by a boa constrictor and he’s afraid of fire and water and trees and the #36 bus. …

Gift of the Sloth

…a tree (in wind, hail or heat) because your life depends on it. Even though your muscles are weak as ribbons, your eyes sightless buttons. It means improvising for rain:…

ju ju baby

…F I S H I N G ! ! I laugh till I fall out of tree             Wait   let me paint picture   you drive north      in her car     lazy…

Roots

Like a poem around a tree Like a freedom flag unfurled A homeless refugee I have travelled round the world I remember slanted mountains with dusted white peaks ivory snow…

Kiyoshi and the Maple

…the tree was one shuffling testimony of love for the Shogun’s daughter. Together they sat an hour reading the tree. A thousand poems came and went. Kiyoshi’s proud, elegant brushstrokes…

Barkskin

http://poems.poetrysociety.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/Barkskin-Jack-Helme-Audio.m4a The wood around the village edge greys in the distance like eyes do in time. The tree bark creases like crows’ feet arounds knots and branched shoulders. Craning my…

Vinden belg sakte (The wind bellows softly)

…in a gust. Washing-dryer, useful, good. Tree-toppler, deadly, bad. Blowing ships over the ocean. Billowing nothingness. Empty movement. Unseen bird-flight In the blank, open sky. Air-snatcher steals the breath Of…

A Horse Is Not Always A Horse

…with bad grace if a friend told a filthy joke in front of the children. Mine was the house with the tree, umbrella pine, I used to toast the nuts,…

Last Chance Love Letter

I’ve heard alcohol makes writing this kind of thing easier so I’m drinking the whisky you gave me last Christmas but I still don’t know what I should say. It’s…

Konstandinos Mahoney

…poems, e.g. Hong Kong Bar Hop, which can be viewed on You Tube. His poems have recently appeared in Live Canon’s 154, New Poems for Christmas and their 2017 Anthology. …

The Old Vicarage, Grantchester

…nameless crimes, And things are done you’d not believe At Madingley on Christmas Eve. Strong men have run for miles and miles, When one from Cherry Hinton smiles; Strong men…

Visiting The Country Of My Birth

The tyrant and his wife were exhumed For proper burial; it is twenty years since They were shot against a wall in Christmas snow.                                             * The fish in the…

untitled death, untitled war

…blue pan eyes, who hours later could have planted seeds of stille nacht in my eardrums. the prophet who said this would be over by christmas has probably been shot….

Beyond His Capacity

…he’d spotted him in the Social Club. Tradition round here the slate’s wiped clean at Christmas but he’d splashed out on Lottery tickets; put one in the card he left…

Heroes of Our Islands

…crayonned in and marginalia (juvenile). Some illus., black and white; defaced.   Inscribed: To dearest John, to speed you in their footsteps, love from Auntie Joan, and kisses, Christmas 1959….

from Letter for the Unknown Soldiers

…which braved no-man’s land in the Christmas truce. Who knew? In your parish church I found you, recto and verso, in a roll of honour – I first spied your names…

Going Up

…clock is starting to spin) then Christmas again; and what they never told our restless generation was keep hold of every childish fascination because Growing Up is best in moderation…

Back Home in Winter

Driving back home, familiar sights like the opening credits of a film on every Christmas. I sleep in cold sheets. When I fumble in the dark the lights aren’t where…

Alison Brackenbury

…Dreams of Power (1981), Breaking Ground (1984), Christmas Roses (1988), Selected Poems (1991), 1829 (1995), After Beethoven (2000) and Bricks and Ballads (2004). in 1997, her work won a Cholmondeley…

Southgrove Road Carol Singing

My childhood blurs in yellow light and cinnamon air, the year irrelevant. A single Gloria holds all my Christmas Eves: nights when we breathe dragon-smoke, clutch rain-crinkled paper and sing…

Home County

There is a village coiled in the Chilterns, all catflaps and thatch, black beams and whitewash, cradled in hills and cosseted by trees where bellringers reel out handstroke and backstroke…

The Guest

…piles of gravel do, delivered to the beginning of a drive, one ear folded like a landscape Christmas card, one eye a red foil bauble dented from storage. He sat…

‘I wish to see the man in the moon’

…holy words, Christmas Vigil barely heard, I search in vain for sacred faces, but like the man there are no traces. “Hallowed be,” my mother glares, I choke on words…

Unwritten History

…catches at the glass, Yet the family don’t turn to see, For their Christmas cheer warms their sports. Time. Tick, tock, Our tiny hearts are racing, Through our house and…

How We Left

https://vimeo.com/101072166 Music by David Julyan. We left in a hurry; our lives hastily packed in the two carrier bags: a toothpaste, some snapshots from the last Christmas (we’ve already forgotten…

The pirate inside

…in front of her mother.   He does not want to attend the Church Fenton Christmas Carol Service, but leer at the nuns who shop at the Village Store, or…

Then I Found Harmony Brown

…investigation as a possible murder. He died on Christmas. The investigation was prompted years later by a call to CNN from a woman who once mistook him for Santa Claus…

Revenue Choir

…support. Give them a big hand, ladies and gentlemen, whether at the Christmas concert, raising the roof in aid of the homeless – who eke out a life below poverty…

From ‘You, Very Young in New York’

…James novel, a Greenwich Village Christmas, A certain kind of frost in the Meatpacking District, and the smell of the     carcasses Dull with the tang of freezing blood…

Time Capsules

They buried both tins together somewhere under the apple trees, to be re-discovered in one thousand years but they weren’t sure, since he could not converse with them, that he…

The Summoner

…move the world, have literally moved our garden shed from one end of the lawn to the other on rollers, my new Christmas bicycle and all your tools still locked…

Rob Miles

…Press Christmas Lights Poetry Competition, judged by Di Slaney and Katharine Towers to appear on postcards nationally, and he was highly commended in the Winchester Poetry Festival competition, judged by…

Mrs Richards’ Year

…worms anymore. However, the feeling of watching the last Christmas roll by – Well, that was a gut-wrenching pain that you shoved down, singing the            carols louder. Mrs Richards…

be poetic:

…orange untouched, like snow, or Christmas oranges…          4. get there, then realize you and your goldfish are not close. you forget to feed it.          5. decide…

Leah Remembers Stars and Mandrakes

…Leah’s eyes were weak but Rachel was beautiful and lovely and traded two mandrakes for a night of love. On the day she pointed out their usual tree. I waited…

from Thomas Hobbes (1588–) Works Motherhood

1. Generation it takes a man to generate a man – Aristotle Hobbes considers the species reproducing itself through his cunt. He considers a horse chestnut tree in late April:…

My Grandmother’s Purse

It feels like a lump of rotting sheepskin, Rough and hard like bark from a tree, The smell of ageing coins stain my hand, Ancient bus tickets and faded pictures…

Civilisation

Daisies in her hair – barefoot and wilded Living on the edge of comfortable. I let her run across the open plain. But she cannot climb the trees Not when…

Places to cry

hiding under the apple tree with broad branches and pink flowers;   when feeding the next door neighbours fish blibity blobity blu halves of dry fish food captured;   and…

Annie Freud

…and graduated in English and European Literature at the University of Warwick. Her pamphlet, A Voids Officer Achieves the Tree Pose, was published by Donut Press in 2006. Her first full…

The Rust Man

…to resurface. The bamboo trees that appeared deceased are now budding with a buttery glow. The miniature humming birds, previously subdued by the dusk, are now harmonizing together in a…

Vanessa Kisuule

…of the UK scene, and she has performed at several festivals including Glastonbury, BrizzleFest and Larmer Tree. She has won Poetry Rivals slam and two Farrago slams and performed at…

If I could write like Tolstoy

…horse under a tree, breath from its nostrils, creases in gloved fingers pulling at the reins, perhaps hoof marks in the mud as he jumps the ditch at the end…

Green Tears

The winds whisper words of warning for the World The Father Tree looks up to the eye of the hurricane Circling above him Like vultures Or mankind Wires Now climb…

Kathleen Jamie

…Stirling in 2011. Collections include The Queen of Sheba (Bloodaxe, 1994), The Tree House (Picador, 2004), which won the Forward Prize for Poetry in 2004, and The Overhaul (Picadaor, 2012)….

Wreck

…origami limb dropping the line –         straps in place, it hoisted the car twenty, forty feet, the river pouring from it, half a tree lodged in the boot….

On Top of the Hill

…ripping from my chest Jumping to the place I would lie. Walking past the tree I carved my name in Nearly faded Telling me it was time to let go….

Notes on a Piano

…speckled light of a tree-strewn yard, a man sheds a tear to the strains of Die Nacht. He plants a lily, as fragile as bone, Like his mother’s kisses by…

My Father’s Home

…it would sound like the way he remembers her smile, the first time she saw him seeking shade under a banana tree. It would look like the way he remembers…

The War Reporter Paul Watson Lost His Camera

…thug -gish Buddha. Jaundiced eyes and gun muzzle -like muzzle daring you. To holler. Hurl skipping stones from the sliding tide. He ducks behind a tree. And here comes your…

Star Man

…light came like a curl of candle smoke and lit a cooking-apple tree inside his head where he’d built a den and brought flowers in a broken mug without its…

Eternal Plane

…almond tree blossom, the grasshopper dragging himself along. She reads down the text past man’s eternal home to mourners going about the streets. This, she thinks, is what happens next…

Reprieve

tree, with its ghastly fingers growing fast up your feet, having you remember how it felt to dance like death is watching, toe to the wall, to hear him tear…

Garden

…its chill In each vein. No thaw. A raw Thrown glassy stare From window panes. One half- Breath of air And I The plum tree With my mouthful of stones….

Jane Lovell

…Alpine Fellowship Writing Prize and the Wisehouse International Poetry Prize. One Tree has been recently published by Night River Wood. Metastatic is published by Against the Grain Poetry Press, and Forbidden is a limited edition portfolio from Coast to Coast to…

The hobby of searching for gold

…rolling mud on his palm. Gold lies at the bottom of the riverbed, under all the gravel, between the bedrock crevices, clinging on tree roots after being swept into movement…

Theo Lewis

Theo is commended in the tree poetry challenge on Young Poets Network, and a third-prize-winner of the Young Poets Network 2017 August challenge #1, themed around edgelands. He is also a 2014…

Dorothea Smartt

Dorothea Smartt’s poem, ‘Headway’ was published in the Winter 2012 issue of The Poetry Review. Her collections include, Connecting Medium and Ship Shape. Her latest collection is a chapbook from Peepal Tree