Evening Alchemy

Evening Alchemy

A few weeks ago my home was Iona.  There in cradled comfort – rocked by the rhythm of the North Atlantic tide  a circle of poets gathered – all called to this most ancient isle where it is said the veil is thin.  A world on the edge of the ocean where magic lives and possibilities are born.

Twilight tide

carries evening rose

magic’s alchemy

soft sipping

turquoise turns

to silver silk

where dreams are kept

in an old sea chest


Born selkie

brown and round

soft speckled

freckled face

liquid love

gentle eyes fill

dreams found

in the old sea chest


Staffa’s song

sails on moonlight waves

quiet ocean dance

curiosity honed

as tiptoe-tail

he tickles silken kelp

for dreams are found

in this old sea chest


The Voyage


I wrote this poem on a beautiful sunny September morning.  We were at sea and it was in the hours before our last seminar together with Abraham and Esther.  Enjoy 🙂

When heavy skies hang damp and cool

In an English Channel grey

The Silhouette – our ship most fine

Sails ‘midst white horses soaked in brine,

Her gleaming bows cut through with ease

These swollen, choppy, steely seas.


It’s far above her waking decks

I find Crow’s quiet, cosy nest,

Astounding views, expanding views

One eighty of the very best

Where sky meets Sea and seagulls soar

I gasp wide-eyed and feel the more.


The passage smooth, our course is south

Beyond a blue Atlantic mouth

Where Spanish flare and passions rise

To Lisbon’s ancient castle prize.

A voyage so rich, this journey’s sweet

Exploring, moving, much to meet.


Gibraltar’s Straits, her monkeys too

Moroccan peaks, surprising views.

The Silhouette, our ship most fine,

Her crew, the people, cabin – mine!

Momentum grows, quickening pace

Blessed beauty, abundant grace.


Laughter’s sails fill with glee

Voyaging the Med, Blue Sapphire’s Sea

Where rests a harbour, jewel of calm

And Roman roads are lined with palms.

There marble paths lead smooth as glass

To ancient ruins, stories past.


There’s so much more I wish to say –

The friendships, contrast and the play

My moonlighted cabin bathed in light

Soft Ocean whispers through the night

Until new threshold, day is born

And magic sparkles with the dawn.

Letters from the Beach

What a moment. What a place. What a time!


Sitting at the kitchen table bathed in warmth, bright sunshine pours through the window and it feels good to be back at this Cottage after more than 40 years.  Gales have been battering the south coast and over fifty shades of grey envelope the soft rounded curves of the South Hams.

The ancient Celtic Fire Festival of Imbolc is upon us, and it’s fitting that what seems to have been many moons of grey skies, are now replaced by a low February sun passing over the southern sky washed sea.

I breathe out a deep sigh and it feels as though my whole being softens like butter left out on a spring day.  Thresholds hover, they are the place in-between worlds, where memories slumber and awaken to Imagination’s kiss.


We’ve arrived. I can hear the distant call of seagulls above the whistling branches of the fir trees.  Two hours in the car and Bezel and I are both keen.  We head across the windswept fairway towards Yarmer Beach. Murky clouds have been replaced by fatter, friskier ones that tease and chase one another across a blue sky.

Running now, almost tumbling we head towards the grassy cliff tops and down through the steep, deep sandy dunes to the shore.

Then suddenly it’s there; the intoxicating smell of the sea.  Gulping in deep breaths of summer days and salty deliciousness, I’m transported through time and space…. into a kaleidoscope of memory which has my senses reeling.

By the time I reach the sea, my face is wet with spray carried in on the strong wind and Bezel waves his tail, suddenly halted by the crashing waves.  Large, white horses race towards us on an incoming tide and I hold onto my hat amidst the wrestling forces of nature.

Crumbling cliffs and ancient granite faces to admire, we walk – with wonder in our footprints as a pair of herring gulls watch on from a grassy outcrop and a dozen oyster catchers perch, bobbing on jagged rocks to greet the incoming tide.