The journey led full circle home

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When she set out the
wee one was yearning, her journey
just begun, her mother’s nipple led
to milk and she suckled ’til full —
the warm soft circle
of breast was home

She felt she was home
until sentience sparked in the
flame of her mind, “walk the circle”
it said so around it she went, around on her journey
she sought to feel full
yet an emptiness led

her ahead and on and led
her to search for a surrogate home
one in which she’d feel full
on the love of another the
futile journey
to bond and to thrive was a hypnotic circle Read More

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Scandinavian Observations

Scandinavia —
You are of this world and you are not
I have inhabited your lands for 54 days and counting
I have been to Lapland and Helsinki and Stockholm and Bergen and over and through many a Norwegian hill (180 tunnels!) and I slid smoothly through fjords and on to Oslo and onwards further still to Copenhagen.
Scandinavia, I have nearly seen all of your lands, but only a little bit of you really for you are vast and varied and 54 days is no time at all when you’re getting to know a place.

Oh Finland —
You wouldn’t play the Northern Lights for me and I am so sad for I travelled far and it was cold and remote and it was the right time of year (or so I was told) but it seems there wasn’t really even a chance anyway. I want my money back and my disappointment erased.

But Finland I forgive you because you are home to the dish drying cupboard, a simple yet clever invention that makes one scratch one’s head and think “why aren’t these everywhere?” It’s brilliant that one can dry dishes while hiding them away behind closed doors so nobody can see them.

Oh and Finland, you make great licorice too, especially the little salty balls coated in white chocolate and then in bitter licorice powder. Yum. Why can’t I eat you forever?

And in the countryside you put on a grand show for me with snow and icy lakes and sunshine and bear paw prints and great cranes flying and calling and dancing in pairs and all your little houses are made of wood and painted red and yellow and blue and sometimes pink and I don’t know how you did it but you always looked beautiful and exactly as the countryside should so thank you for exceeding my expectations and for giving me joy. Read More

From ashes

It’s ok to be different
It’s you, after all
In you there is no different
Only you, at the centre, branching out
Powered geothermally from within
Your hot core radiant
Enough to warm your soul
And to keep you charged Read More

Spunky the Monkey

Spunky the Monkey
My life-sized cuddle companion
Mascot
Slightly strange bedfellow
White haired and red eyed (but not on drugs)
We would spoon in bed
Or you’d wrap dangling limbs around me
All the way round
All the girls in the team had a monkey like you
But you were bigger and better
Your red eyes were completely unnatural
Compared to the hazel eyes of the others

Over the years you took pride of place
At the top of the line of toys
On my bed
You sat at the back of the imaginary slippery dip
Following the other toys
On their precipitous ride Read More

The Body

The Body, a reflection on self and overcoming trauma through the body. My latest poem on Whisper and the Roar.

Whisper and the Roar

by Melita White

The body wants to move
wants to reinhabit itself
it wants to play
To bend arc writhe and double with grace and ease
The body lets go
It also gets tired
and stiff and it aches
The body takes up more space than the other bodies do
It is majestic and has presence
Full of symbolism and reference
it represents fundamental truths
cruel ironies and distortions
The body is encumbered
Yet extends beyond boundaries
The body is boundless

View original post 200 more words

The words unfreeze in my mouth

How do I beseech the
guardian of words
to thaw, to unfreeze
the ice that dwells in
my stomach, in my
shoulders, my throat and my mouth?
Such ice also lives in my heart and
occasionally melts when the
stuck, trapped phrases
are warmed with fire and are
sparked and sparkling and tumbling
with joy both out and upon
the air skipping jauntily upon my
parched twisted tongue
where they
pool, dance and scramble
streaming once more along
tapping against my
hard ceramic teeth
where they
find life and scatter…

_______________________________________________________________________________

The words unfreeze in my mouth is a Golden Shovel poem based on four lines from The Kalevala, a Finnish epic poem.

“The words unfreeze in my mouth
and the phrases are tumbling
upon my tongue they scramble
along my teeth they scatter.”

(1: 7-10 Oxford World’s Classics edition translated by Keith Bosley)

Golden Shovel

“Terrance Hayes invented a poetry form he calls the Golden Shovel. You take a line (or lines) from a poem you admire, and use each word in the line (or lines) as an end word in your poem while maintaining the order. If you choose a line with six words, your poem would be six lines long.” Taken from https://web.njit.edu/~ronkowit/poetsonline/archive/arch_goldenshovel.html

The Path (a poem)

I can’t find the path
All I can see is snow
Tall thin trees crowd in, block me
Twigs catch at my coat
Ice conspires to slip me up
As does fear

I give up and find another path
One made of dirt
More grounded
It doesn’t go far
I scramble through and up and over
Discover human artefacts
Evidence of existence

I head back Read More

The Path (a story)

I was looking for the path the other day and I couldn’t find it. All I could see was forest: slender branches and tiny twigs in my way, snow billowing underfoot filling gaps between trees that stood so tall and so close together. Where was the path?

Not knowing anything about snow and how it behaves made it feel dangerous, even though it glinted in the sunlight and tempted me in. Would I slip? Would I sink down? What was under the surface? How deep would I fall? Everything was so new, so enticing yet impenetrable. I carefully took a few steps, marvelled at the sparkly crystals underfoot, captured the moment on camera, and turned back, equally excited and frustrated.

She wanted to play in the snow. Put on her mittens and scrape it, scoop it, taste it, mould it, throw it at her brother. She was amazed at how it packed down in between her hands, got harder and icier with each slap. Big clumsy mittens flapping around on tiny little hands. Four-year-old hands so small and smooth, encased in mittens with smiling faces on them. She would grow into them. A green plastic rain jacket with white buttons like giant peppermints. A beanie matched the mittens: red, green and white. Little leather ankle boots, tan with striped laces. The snow came unexpectedly and was gone just as fast.

With each step my foot lands and falls, lands and falls. Momentary stability gives way to the unknown then finds it again. I find the path easily. I realise that I didn’t know a path could be made of snow. Until now, in my mind, there was only one kind of path: dirt. As soon as my mind cleared I could see the path. A new path. A new way of seeing. Read More

The space between

We try to find balance
By going into hiding
Like anthropomorphised leopards
Flitting among shadows of flame trees
Flickers of light fire our nerves
Each alone, together we make the journey
And with each new step feel like debutantes


This poem is the result of a creative workshop at an artists’ residency I’m currently staying at in Finland. It was based on concepts that we worked with and discussed throughout the afternoon in a number of ways. This poem was directly inspired by a group artwork/collage, words or phrases that the artwork inspired in us, and elements of chance. I like working with partially imposed structure. It makes creating something so much easier to work within limits.

I am

The baby cooed
With big wild eyes
Her round baby face morphed through every expression
Cheeks deliciously plump
Flesh-apples surrounding black cavern of toothless mouth
Issuing peals of sunshine and flutey vowels
Aspirations of affirmation
Inspire, expire
“I am” said the baby
And her Mama answered back:
“You are”