Fireside secrets

Listen girl keep looking you’d say

Watch that fire flicker with dreams

See pictures of life cross it

And swallow the future whole.

Tell yourself you can see and you will

Shadows of orange flame become futures

Worlds of opportunity open to you

If you only believe they are.

I’m not talking magic or hocus pocus

My words are meant to convey

The simple life you can make

If you should need to escape.

The rat runs here no more comfort

Than the days when I was small

Well, in some ways it is but really

I’m only saying why have the same

When you could have it all?

Written about conversations with my nana as a child


©️AilsaCawleyPoetry 2019


Broken man

A broken man skeletal but proud

Walks in daring anyone

To mention his weight loss

Haunted face deathly gaunt

Knowing each day brings him closer

To the end.

He knows what is happening

Will tell you after a drink

Wants no sympathy, fact dealing

So there’s not speculation

As he hears them discuss him

Talk about the ‘condition ‘

Coming to take the life he knew

Your words are not accurate

This thing filled him with stoicism

While eating away who he was

Wanting to tell them while asbestos eats

He can still hear every single beat.

Written about the close friend of my dad who was a fighter and battled asbestosis, a very brave man even as he was being broken down.


©️AilsaCawleyPoetry 2019

When Hitler lived down the road

Without a glimmer of a smile

Or a twinkle in his eye

The latest tale would begin to unfold

With an honest John expression

And a would I lie to you

Your attention he would hold.

Hitler he’d say lived down the road

When he was hiding after the war

It was all on the hush hush

Though everyone knew

Cos they’d seen him in the pub

And he’s rumoured to be a lush.

He’s a tiny fella nowt to look at

A bit different without his tash

And he daren’t get got up in jackboots

Or his dressy up Mac

Pretends he’s some canny old fella

But even the kids know the truth

Hitler invaded byker , he’s hiding in plain sight

Wandering around like a lost sheep

While he waits for his mates to arrive

Hitler was there he’s a master of disguise

I know you haven’t seen him yet

But I’m telling you he’s still alive!!

Look Dad are you telling the truth?

I mean it really can’t be true..

With a shocked look he’d say

Would I ever lie to you?


©️AilsaCawleyPoetry 2019

As with all good tales this held a very small grain of truth. This was the story my Dad built around that grain, which was not exactly a truthful grain….

Fools rally

Trying to defend your actions saying

By union we become slaves to be

Thrown to the owners whims and fancies

Hoping your bigoted followers will roar

To your rally without a cause

Without truth, justice just another pack

Of your lies to make your own name

Go forever down in history

As the fools you are

The emperors who have no new clothes

Just the same bitter fabric you always



©️AilsaCawleyPoetry 2019

Fired up

The fires have been lit

And in awe we will sit

Marvelling at our world

As it newly unfurled

Fired up and ready to go.

The fire was well lit

And a shimmering glow

Is all that remains of it’s passion

A spark in the air as it floats

Towards the torch it has fashioned

From the air.

We wait for madness to end

Our tin gods to rot, descend

The embers glowing slightly

At the world they take lightly

Torn down around us

By those who live in pretend

Saying it’s a shame to end

The regime that they built

And they’re hiding under a quilt

Of lies and disrespect

But hey don’t worry

It’s all going so swiftly

They’ll be be right nifty

there’s no need to get fired up

Just hold out your begging cup.




There she stood in her wrinkled peach skin

Wizened by years and knowing

That her full self would not be seen

By the people who chose fear

Of age and cunning.

She smiled at the thought of time

Playing pranks on those beautiful ones

With souls darker than any shade

That could be viewed on the bleakest

Of starless nights .

The pulling of the enforced smiles

Bestowed on those who berated her daily

Yet said nothing except sweet hellos

For fear of the old woman’s curse

Of spending eternity with her.

If they knew she thinks I’ve harmed none

From a girl to cailleach

Yet still they fear my separateness

Like it’s catching or enchanted

Or they may learn something.

If I were not a woman she tuts

A hermit I’d be and no fear would follow

But a woman who wants the same…

One day we shall have it. A world of equals

Of nothing different

Of that I can hope.


©️AilsaCawleyPoetry 2019


He whispered in her ear

Words tinkling, melodious

Echoes of something

She couldn’t place

In this time or another

She was fragile and brittle

Because she learned it was safer

Than the confusion raining

When trying to decipher

The meaning behind

His smiling words

That sweetly said

In your glassy state I can

Do whatever I choose

Shatter your smiling face

Or play games inside your head.

His words did not ring hollow

Filled her with a dread

Moving slowly away

Stealth her only option

Severance not what he expected


She’s no longer an empty shell

Made of glass and ready to break

And she’s armed with knowledge

Like an antiquarian

On how to spot a fake.


©️AilsaCawleyPoetry 2019