My Poem “Perseverance”

The perseverance of imagination
is what gives an artist their muse…
the perseverance of an extraordinary idea
is what inspired the first philosophers,
the first explorers, the first inventors,
the first daredevils, the first pilots,
the first men to set foot on the moon…
the perseverance of a team of dreamers
is what has propelled all the man-made
exploratory robots launched into space
to get close up eye-views of the planets
of our solar system and has led to trails
of human built wheels to leave their mark
upon the dusty copper coloured
surface of the planet Mars.

Perseverance is having the strength
of mind to decide to not give up
no matter the distance that has to be crossed…
perseverance is moving forwards despite
others having reservations about your plan
because you know with all that you are
that not following your heart
would be a sacrifice with too high of a cost…
perseverance is finding answers to questions
that were once thought to be irrevocably lost…
perseverance is thinking about the potential
future of everyone on Earth instead of anchoring
yourself to the ideals of the distant past.

The perseverance of life is why there
is so much diversity of species
that is unique to this beautiful planet…
the perseverance of light is why
stars continue to shine long after
their life-span has come to an end…
the perseverance of spirit is why
singers continue to sing,
why painters continue to paint,
why actors continue to act,
why dancers continue to dance,
why people listen to music, fall in love,
and often find themselves living in a trance.

The secret source of success
is not achieving more of something
than somebody else –
the secret of true success is realising
what it takes to do what has to be done,
what it takes to make it through the hard times,
why it is important to believe in yourself,
why it is important to believe in others:
because it is remarkable what extraordinary
feats can be achieved by people
when they are inspired and they are compelled
by the power of perseverance.

My Poem “Naturally Reflective”

I am so reflective
that I might as well be a mirror…
my emotions flow so easily
I might as well be a river…
I am sometimes so transparent
I might as well be a window…
I am so easy to read
that I might as well be a book
because most of the time the expression
is one easy that accurately conveys
my feelings and my thoughts…
I am like a dark moonlit ocean…
I am like the spinning chrome rim
of a car wheel that is constantly in motion…
I am like a light-bulb whose face
brightens or dims depending upon
what I am talking about and who I am with…
I am like a stream of sunlight
after it passes through a prism of glass –
because when all of the individual
collective components that make me
who I am spill out of me
like water through a sive
all of the droplets of inspiration that
I have accumulated within me
share themselves so effortlessly,
because for better or for worse
I am and I have always been
someone who is naturally reflective.

Rest In Peace, David Bowie (a tribute)

On January 10, 2016, I wrote a poem called “Always the Starman” dedicated to the late great David Bowie who died on that very day in 2016 – and I can still remember where I was and what I was doing when I heard of his untimely passing, and I can still remember being immediately inspired to mark the memory of one of the most famous and celebrated music artists of the 20th Century – and two days later I published the poem that I wrote on my blog for all the world to read so that they may get a sense of just how inspirational David Bowie was and still is.

Not long after David Bowie’s death, I remember that I was writing a new short story called “The Man In Black” about this mysterious character – who I didn’t truly know the identity of, nor why they were so mysterious… all I knew at that point was that whoever they were they dressed all in black, they had mysterious and powerful gifts that enabled them to appear one minute and disappear the next, they could bring animals and perhaps people back to life, and they may or may not be some kind of angel or some other supernatural being. And something else that I knew immediately was that whoever this mysterious “man in black” was he also bore an uncanny resemblance to the late great David Bowie, as some sort of tribute to him. But that was it. I originally intended to include my short story “The Man in Black” in my 2016 short story collection “Too Close To The Sun”, however for some reason I held it back… and to this day I still do not know why, what, or who stopped me from doing so – but I am so glad that they did, because from that first story there followed others that featured the same “Man in Black” who at times was known to white also depending upon when you met him. And slowly but surely I wrote more and more, until I finally found myself with seven short stories that explored who the “Man in Black/Man in White” was and why he did what he did. And to this day the stories of my short story collection “Playing God” still remain close to my heart, because within them are characters who I know and who I recognise: characters in need of being saved by a hero, a friend, a rebel, an angel, a god dressed all in black, and sometimes dressed all in white – someone who we would all wish would pay us a visit and heal the world of the present from what we are currently being plagued by.

I wrote my original poem “Always the Starman” and “The Man in Black”, the first story of my book “Playing God”, as a personal tribute to David Bowie – but the more stories that I wrote about this mysterious man who looked and sounded just like David Bowie, I also found myself uncovering many different sources of inspiration – from ancient Greek mythology to the daily torments that some people have to deal with – and I also found myself learning more about why I love writing so much: that thrill of exploration and discovery that I find every time I embark upon a writing challenge that I know will take me to places that I never imagined I would ever venture to. And that is what it is so enthralling and exciting about being a writer and an author of fiction: you never know where it is going to take you.

I will always be eternally grateful to the late great David Bowie for his music, for his creativity, and for the gift of inspiration that he gave to me – which coalesced over time into becoming a book of stories written in tribute to him, but also a tribute to hope, optimism and the gift of life that we are all blessed with which we all sometimes take for granted.

Rest in peace, David Bowie

“David Bowie” by Derren Brown

8 January 1947 – 10 January 2016

My Poem “Missing Time”

Since the start of this
world-shattering pandemic
I know deep in my soul
that I have missed the sound
of a particular source of music -
a soundtrack, a beat,
a rhythm of life that can be heard,
felt, and seen within your minds eye,
whether it be morning, noon, or night:
the same pulse of inspiration
that first surged within me
at the very moment when
I knew that I was born to be a poet.

What I love about writing
and what keeps me coming back
to the blank page time and again
is the same thing that I miss
about sitting in a café
surrounded by people,
before the days of mandatory masks
and before compulsory social distancing.

The thrill of the unknown,
the magic of the instantaneous,
the order and the chaos that to me
always made sense and which I could
always easily pull into focus:
all that being an artist is all about...
you can't plan for it, you can only create it
when you feel it within you boiling away
with such ferocity that you know
it is about to explode -
which is why artists need to capture
what occurs to them before
whatever idea forms combusts into dust
and becomes as spectral as a ghost.

I yearn to go back in time...
I wish that I could return to a place
at a point in the past where and when
I truly believed every moment
would always last...
I still cannot believe that we are all
living in the world that greets my senses
and compels my thoughts
and my emotions so overwhelmingly...
I wish that I could do something,
I wish that I could write something,
I wish that I could imagine something
that might serve to transport
everybody away from our current stark reality -
perhaps to a moment of peace, joy, and love
that the world once enjoyed,
or to a time in the future when I know
the memory of our current present
will not be as potent.

I have personal places
and I have particular times
where and when I return to within
my thoughts and within my dreams
that mean the world to me
that feel so close to me that I could
reach out and grasp them:
perfect moments the like of which
everybody has, which we all would do
anything to get back to,
which we never stop missing
and which are among life's
most precious of blessings.

My Poem “Exposed to The Elements”

Even when it is cold and wet
I like to get out of bed,
I like to get dressed,
and I like take a walk in the elements –
because just as when the weather
is fine and dry I enjoy nothing more
than being exposed to whatever
emanates unabated from the sky,
whether that is raindrops or golden sunshine…
my secret to not feeling cold,
as the wind around me whistles and howls,
is to keep going and to not stop
until I see, until I hear,
and until I feel as if
I have experienced moments
and instances that have imprinted
upon me and have left me inspired.

I live every day under the curse
of the imagination of a dreamer…
I live every day with the gift
of the eternal poet within my soul…
I live every day seeing the silver lining
around so many clouds filled
with lightning and thunder…
I live every day believing that
if we all stay upon the road
that is our sometimes up and down life
we will all one day arrive somewhere,
with something, or with someone,
that we will always want to have
and to hold and never let go of.

It can’t always be sunny…
life can’t always make sense…
the people whom we meet in life
can’t always be as sweet honey…
life can’t always be about pounds
and pence, or dollars and cents –
because what life is really all about
can only be found when you set out
and when you choose to be exposed
to the world and all of its elements.

My Poem “The Great Outdoors”

8:17 AM was when the power went out,
and it was a minute later –
at exactly 8:18 AM –
that I heard the call, the alarm:
this distinct and loud voice
beckoning me to put on my walking boots
and take a look around at the wonders
of life and nature to be found
on any given morning when you
just choose to let go
of whatever is holding you back –
and when you have on your doorstep
a snapshot of life that is as unparalleled and unbounded
as that of the Centre of England
you simply have got to put one foot
in front of the other and explore
the Great Outdoors.


My Poem “We Have It All”

I am different…
you are different…
everybody is different –
and yet we are all the same,
which I think is absolutely amazing!
I am on a different path,
you are in a different lane –
and yet so many people
find themselves at the same
moment of crossroads
when and where there is a vital
transference of knowledge and energy,
which can feel electrifying!
I am experiencing what I see
and what I feel around me personally,
you are interpreting everything
like only you can –
and yet when there is the discovery
of a breakthrough of life-changing proportions
people from all around the world
can gather together and herald
the arrival of yet another game-changer
in how we all live our lives.

I have never stopped being
in awe of the power and the poetry
of the universe that we can see
and measure with our own eyes
and with some of the instruments
that we have invented;
however, I know that all the secrets of existence
may never be known –
which is fine by me,
because there is more to be gained
by investigating the source of a riddle
than the eventual reveal of a mystery.

I understand the draw to explore…
I agree that we need to colonize
other worlds in order to know
more about the diversity of life
throughout the universe of galaxies…
I do not dispute that there are
other planets with other civilizations
living and thriving on them…
I would gladly take a ticket to ride
upon a rocket into orbit
or aboard a starship at warp-speed
to another part of the Milky Way galaxy –
but I do think that we all need to
look around at this world
that we live upon once in a while,
our home, and realize that right now
this is all that we have, this is who we are,
and if we could all just choose
to stop making so much of our
societies revolve around
corruption and greed
then everybody could have it all
because here on Earth
we have everything that
we could possibly need.

My Poem “The G.O.A.T.”

Who, what, where, when, and why
something or someone
is considered by us to be
the “Greatest Of All Time”
is not always easy to define –
because the reasons that
we hold something or someone
in such high regard
sometimes depends upon
what memories we have
in connection to them.

The “Greatest Artist of All Time”,
for example, might be
considered as such because –
just like from a magician
with a magic wand –
magic is always produced
every moment that they touch
the blank canvas in front of them
with a paint brush in their hand.

The “Greatest Musician of All Time”
you may consider to be that one
instrumentalist who from the moment
that you hear them start playing
their music you feel as if
they are communicating
directly to you, while making
your heart feel like it is beating
in time with a drum-like rhythm.

The Greatest Actor; the Great Performer;
the Greatest Driver; the Greatest Writer –
whomever it is who you believe
is the “Greatest of the Great”
could be someone who you know,
or they could be someone who
you may have only seen once
but who from the instant that you saw them
you were immediately struck
by their seemingly effortless talent
and you were convinced that they
must be the “Greatest of All Time”.

My Poem “Scary Movies”

As a child, I – like so many children do –
grew up watching so called
“scary movies”, “horror films”,
that truly scared me,
and I also watched thrilling
and occasionally comedic depictions
of fictional, supernatural and paranormal
events and characters
that made me jump, entertained me,
made my heart beat fast, made me smile,
and put me in a good mood…
films like ‘It’, ‘Nightmare on Elm Street’,
‘Jaws’, and ‘Alien’ initially effected me
on an emotional level –
however now I can appreciate
the “fright tactics” of the film-makers,
because what feeling they were
attempting to illicit in people
is what they succeeded in making
me feel quite profoundly…
I also watched such paranormal comedies,
like: ‘Ghostbusters’, ‘The Addams Family’,
‘The Munsters’, ‘Beetlejuice’ –
which were fun to watch,
enjoyable, and they did not
take their subject matter too seriously.

Even to this day, I still occasionally
watch scary movies –
and I would have to highlight
the films that take place in the
“Conjuring Universe”, that feature
fictional depictions of real-life
paranormal investigators
Ed and Lorraine Warren,
based upon documented
supernatural experiences
that occurred around the world,
as being some of the scariest,
the most thrilling, the most heart-racing,
and the most believable of any
and all of the scary movies
that I have seen recently
and the experiences that I had
of seeing them in a cinema
will forever stay with me.

If could pick just one
so called “scary movie”,
or a particular supernatural thriller,
that I believe is my favourite
of all that have been made,
I would have to choose
‘The Shining’, directed by Stanley Kubrick,
based upon the book of the same name
by the one and only “master of horror”,
Stephen King – because to me
‘The Shining’ is a masterpiece
of both storytelling and film-making
that entances you from the first
camera shot and from the first
note of music of the film’s soundtrack –
just as the original ‘Jaws’ does;
and, in my opinion, the ability
of movie-makers to be able to
take a viewer on a roller-coaster
ride of emotions, thoughts,
and feelings, while watching
something “otherworldly”,
by using all the magic of
movie-making at their disposal,
in a truly collaborative effort,
is what contributes to what makes
the most thrilling and the most scary
of thrilling and scary movies.

Happy Halloween! 🎃

My Poem “The Ten Bells”

There is a repeating
and a constantly resounding phenomenon...
there is a moment of time
that recurs every few years...
there is a place where poet and inspiration
can be found, where things only feel
right and never wrong...
there is a moment like right now
when bells ring out, when angels sing -
when not even the devil
could illicit any kind of fear -
when and where the beauty
of the poetry of life reveals once again
that there is a reason for everything...
there is a season that returns -
like the waves of an ocean
that goes out and then comes back in...
there is a state of mind, body,
and spirit that never dies,
which resides within each of us
like a deep and unending well...
there is something that happens
which never changes,
that always rises back to the surface
to greet me, over and over,
like a poetic rhyme,
that has the power to compel me -
and it is at those moments
when I know without being told
that the bells of time
are ringing ten.