7 Apr 2020


I think I have submitted a poem as my blog only once before.

But today demanded this poem.

It is the bare bones of a poem; half formed in the night when I lay awake and then wrestled with this morning as I took my once a day permitted exercise. I offer it with an apology and hope you will be kind to it – it is very young; yet unformed and rather clumsy; just seconds before I send this to Caroline, I am still rewriting bits of it.

If it speaks to you, then that's great – it's done its work as a blog. If not, please ignore it. Poetry does not work for many and that's okay.

It's a difficult time for all of us. I'll be honest and say I'm really struggling. I don't seem to be able to achieve anything and I feel overwhelmed by all the advice I'm getting on how to put my business on line; how to home-school my girls; how I must use this time for family and to take the time and use it well.

But time slips away.

I went into my abandoned studio yesterday and found that my beautiful and colourful clock had – somehow – fallen off the wall and smashed on the floor. I am not ashamed to say I stood there and cried. That broken clock seemed to symbolise everything I feel right now.

So, I wrote this. Read it aloud if you can – it's written to be read aloud.


Time slips...

The clock has slipped from the wall

And broken on the floor.

Its time is fixed at eight o'clock;

Eight o'clock for ever more.

My studio is empty: grey;

No classes; colour; clients; life.

I slip sadly from the room

And quietly lock the door.

Time slips...

No six o five London train,

No seven o'clock school bus.

No gym, no swim,

No need to be at my desk by nine.

No business lunch to end by two,

No diary scheduled full.

No end of school at half past three,

No need to stop at five for tea.

Time slips...

Meals lose rhythm;

Lunch is when the girls get up – whenever they feel like getting up.

Dinner slips back and back and

Pre-dinner drinks slip forward...

Time slips...

Sleep loses pattern;

My bedtime now is half past nine; my girls still up at three.

I wake at five and could achieve —

But time slips away like a dream...

My lonely morning walk is Nature's time.

The woodland light grows more green

And, every day, the bluebells slip their buds to show more blue.

The birds are an orchestra, fortissimo,

Drowning out the sound of cars.

Time slips...

And the news is Covid, covid, covid:

Like the Raven cawing "Nevermore."

The time has stopped at eight o'clock;

Eight o'clock for evermore.


A Moodscope member.

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