To celebrate Hull being awarded this accolade for 2017 I enclose here some poems that express my love of the area. Some I submitted to help the bid, others are just heartfelt. see just another canvas page for my feelings about home, Hull and East Yorkshire; or read – further down – The Green Man of the Wildwood or Changing Moods – my meditation on the beautiful River Humber
I remember this land
Its bones are my bones
Its moods my own.
Though I dwell in city concrete
And in fear, the trees retreat
Let me ride this fiery dragon
Across Albions’ ancient fields.
In dreams I breathe the northern lights
As I stalk the limestone heights
I bathe in muddy estuaries
And drink at sacred springs.
Let me sleep between the standing stones
Trawl the patterns of its stars
May I pluck its peaks and weave its roots
Dance barefoot on the beach.
As I celebrate the moment
In the changing of its years
With its bones of rock and diverse moods
I remember this land and me.
The Kingstown Tale of Freedom
A cup of hot chocolate
With added double cream
East touches West in
A confectioners dream
White sugar/brown sugar
Both taste as sweet
When sprinkled in the cup of life
As multi cultures meet
Take a slice of brown bread
A fluffy bun of white
Share a friendship sandwich
Forget the ethnic fight
Weave a piece of white silk
With a deep amber stitch
Create a world of difference
In a tapestry so rich
Paint a snowy canvas
With rich ‘umber paint
Clean the city’s brushes
Of hatred’s taint
Seed a crop of daisies bright
In a terracotta pot
Plant a sacred garden
And stop suspicion’s rot
Play a tune of harmony
On jet and ivory keys
Blend the notes together
For the diversity reprise
A forest of snow white yacht sails
Midst a pile of rusting trawls
Create a festival of love and light
As ‘Ull and Freedom calls
Sea Mist – my relationship with the East Yorkshire coast
In my time I loved to walk beside the sea
And dancing surf, with seagulls, and bobbing crab net buoys.
I loved the old boats, the harbour walls, and feeling free
From city grime, poison fumes and techno-toys.
Once, on a cliff top, with crumbling, muddy sides
I spied the comic flash of puffin flight
Streaking past, diving to greet the rolling tide
And rise again with fishy prize held tight.
A sandy point with rustling spiky dune grass
Stitching it in place like carpet tape or string,
Is broken by winter wind and wave, till, unable to pass
It remained unreachable till Spring.
Sleepy coves with white chalk stacks
Where gannets gossiped on every ledge.
The smell of bird lime and salt dried bladderwrack
Reminded me that life is hard at terra-firma’s edge.
Sun warmed hours hunting crabs in brimming
Rock pools like watery time capsules.
Standing at the waterline skimming
Sea-smooth pebbles, until the hot air cooled
And a full moon painted a silver pathway;
Or storm clouds marbled its ebb and flow in shades of bold.
Such dawns: two mighty elements merged in hazy grey
Till sun rise blushed the waking sea with gold.
How I loved those moods from mirror calm and still as bliss
To raging anger; and days when I resigned
Myself to sly, insidious sea fret mist
Drenching every aching inch of skin with freezing brine.
Now, as I walk those cliff tops, or feel the sandiness
Between my aging toes, the changing facets of its flood
Echo mine, strangely restless
And surging, in the tides that drive my blood.