A Thank You Note to Mum

The gift I treasure most

Is our compendium of memories

Enough stories to span centuries

But collected in just a few decades

Like individual jewels in priceless accessories.

Guide to Keeping an Imaginary Friend by Percival Postlethwaite Esq

Though I may not consume food, not even laying a place for me at the table is just rude,

Birthdays ought to be celebrated, suitable gifts and cards to reflect my interests generated,

wrapped, labelled and presented,

Account ought to be taken of the space I require when queuing in shops, sitting on trains, out for walks or gathering in circles for intimate talks,

One ought to keep a separate list or register of me when in public places, in case of evacuation and fire,

Do not assume I can walk through doors – if one closes on me please do allow a suitable pause

And if it does not open again fairly soon – you ought to be the one to help me get through,

Finally, when serving imaginary sandwiches at noon, do not invite me to that ghastly playroom,

Those teddy bears are ridiculous creatures and that doll with the ringlets has quite frightful features.




Golden Tunnels

A nest of chicks,mouths open,ready to be fed a philosophy for life

Hidden in worms dug up in the schoolyard

Chirping ‘the journey of life may be easy may be hard’

On bright summer morns

An out of tune piano cheering them on

Towards blind optimism

If not baptism –

First steps towards riding with the king of kings

Looking for golden tunnels

In dark openings

A seeker of light

In answer to wonderings –

A higher purpose in the lowly son of God

A built-in resilience, ready to fight

Leading down golden tunnels –

Blind optimism

Prepared to die.



Maps of discovery carved with claws

Boundaries drawn and scratched on skin

And within

Adventure tasted through teeth

Tearing at clothes and what lies beneath

Tangled truths gasped unaware

A web, a trap

Spun from half discarded underwear

Patterns etched with firm hands

On a soft, pale,landscape

And the white flag risen in surrender

Is grasped, clasped

With both hands

‘Mine’ she gasped

And declared

Watching intently as both his teeth and his passion he bared

In one last bid to save himself from her savage claim

Before becoming fully ensnared

A beast about to be slain.



Spite Light

Can you see?

Shall I turn on the light?

Are you scared?

Shall I turn on the light?

Are you lost?

Shall I turn on the light?

Have you lost something other than yourself?

Shall I turn on the light?

I won’t.

You are a light

Guide yourself home.


A school is not a building but a community

Stitched together with hundreds of hearts and minds

All working to the same ends at the same time

A unique combination of energy and souls

That doesn’t exist anywhere else in the world

And will never exist again –

Not that exact combination – not exactly the same.

A school is not somewhere you can visit

It is a living breathing entity

Evolving through change

A school is a moment

A collection

A force

A community

And no fire or plague can finish it

No global crisis can diminish it.


They had put violets in my room

When I returned from the hospital

And mistakenly took six tablets in one dose

Having discharged myself far too soon

Fearful of missing my flight

And mindful of my mother’s fright

And while I didn’t die

I came exceptionally close

Even after having out-run the ghost

Who has chased me, unseen, through the tunnels of Derinkuyu –

Underground city – hell – both

Running at break-neck speeds I had never known

I had the capacity for

Defying the guide

Who told me under no circumstances must I deviate

From the course

Divined by himself and his expert team –

He’d lied

It became a necessity

And though I did not know the maze of chambers deep underground

It is my belief that I was found

By a far more powerful guide

And brought back to the light

While it would have made sense for me to have been irretrievably lost

I knew I had to escape whatever the cost

And together – me and my spirit guide –

This is what we achieved.


Furious at my survival they had tried next

To conquer me with thunder and poison

Issued via a venomous bite

And blue lipped I had been placed in an ambulance

Blood pressure dragging me down with it into a trance

Back down to a level under the surface

Inches from Hell without having earned it.


(The violet, I learned later, is a mediator between Heaven and Earth –

A symbol known to bring balance)


Baby Come Back – A Light-hearted Lament on the Disappearance of the ZX Spectrum

Please come back. You are trendy now, I promise and not even in a retro way –

Your rainbow spectrum icon represents everyone

From people who work for the NHS to people who are gay

All the kids are coding now – you’d never be alone

Especially not with everyone trapped inside their home

Punctuation Pete on every screen would be a home-school revolution

Providing the government with a marvelous catch-up solution

And while I’m still not convinced it was any kind of game

In hindsight I’d be tempted to tell my students the same!


You, almost silent

Musical prophecies with rarely discernible words but energies

A self-made metaphor for your life

Speak to me

In a language crafted in the minuscule pause between heartbeats

While I shout




Are the accumulated wealth of my lifetime’s


Laid at your alter of Apollo – hidden out of sight

Sarawati’s appreciation – gilded with insight

Acknowledged in the silence that lets us hear rhythm

The contrasting opposite that creates theĀ  whole

The unbreakable bond that urges us to freedom

And the person that is our spiritual home.




Not Personnel

The seats faced backwards so medical personnel could face the patients…


I was not medical personnel;

I was a 6 year old child flying home with my Mother

On the only flight available

To get ‘home’ from home – RAF Wildenrath – quickly,

So we sat there obediently –

My phobias and me

Wincing each time the curtains were drawn back to reveal

One of the nurses to administering some treatment that was necessary,

Or providing pain relief – at least to some degree,

My hands clasped in a prayer that it would

not involve blood.


I was not medical personnel

I was a 6 year old girl

With – what at the time I had no way of being able to tell-

What was only later understood

To have been a Most Peculiar Childhood.

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