They danced the dance

They danced the dance, one two three, three three, stop…

All change, flounce away partner change

Keep looking back for the sparks fly like fireflies,

To entice the partners to dance again as they will like addicts who need the next fix,

The sparks dance prettily in the sky

They were set off long ago and burned slowly like fireworks 

Chemical reaction, boom once ,twice, three times 

Till they fizzle and die burning themselves out into stardust 

And become the flickers of something that attracted them 

In the first place 

They are sparkle dust, part of someone else’s dance 

Watching them dance the dance of all change.

©Ailsa Cawley Poetry 2015

Desperation Express 

Roll up, roll up for the ride you can’t ignore

The suck it up and see if it’s all the same once more

As much as you like to dine on here till you’re bloated and gorged outside

From table to table you drift, graze and  unceasingly glide

While inside you’re dried up with twisted emotions being without a core

A ship with no anchor without so much as a shore

Nor a place to take refuge and rest

You are but a husk a dried up old shell of a deserted wasps nest

Where flesh and bone once dwelled, pounding with life 

With feelings, emotions clicking and switching complain of your strife

Now you live only to settle old scores and say how well you cope

With a dash of excitement here or there convincing you there is hope 

That you still can ride like a young child the desperation express 

Because you think getting off this train will bar your success. 


©Ailsa Cawley Poetry 2015

Mist mass

The mist swirls around the land almost threatening in it’s nothingness

Unsure if I can really see what seems to be there or a creature plays

In some forgotten realm ahead of me in the pea green haze 

A rational thought, always the sensible one this ration,

Tells me to get with it and what else could it be but someone coming towards me?

Of course the part, that is more of me than not sings another song,

It’s coming, one of those night creeper things, coming for you

And getting closer, closer, heart beating fit to burst at the shape coming right for me

That I still cannot make out what this lumbering mass is

Enter the last cloud of gloom , the mist mass

Heading for it, as it does for me

Hold my breath, counting, counting, closer, closer….

My head begins to whirl looking for it’s hiding place of which there’s none

But it has vanished into the misty vapour leaving me cold to my bones

With the feel of an icy hand on the back of my neck…….

Secret of the Castle walls

Up, up we climb to the heights where the castle remains
Lay broken and ruined but filled with mystery
Almost swirling on the wind the magic trapped
To remain here within a hand’s grasp it seems
Always to be felt but never to be touched
Not now
Not in this time
We need a time of quiet listening,  reflection
And one day the hubbub will still to nothing
Where secrets can be given to the trusty souls
Of the deepest times of lanterned magic
Flickering candle light, 
No sorcery in corners fearful or mistrusting
The wise woman is respected for her knowledge
Her healing and well wishes
And as the magic shows the castle once more
Not ruined but in full majestic glory
You will be in awe of the beauty you missed
Hidden because you studied only your boots
Not the possible pathways ahead.

©AilsaCawley Poetry 2015


Stumbling over and around his words like a child’s building blocks

Trying to smile as he told her the fateful words ‘you are irregular ‘ not normal he kept back

Though his expression said it with one solitary glance.

Come through to the parlour he beckoned and try out your costume for the freak show

Attempting now to reassure her with phrases of ‘you should manage’ or ‘it’ll likely be fine

Without meeting her gaze.

She shrank in on herself, sure everyone could see at a glance her oddity, not difference, but flawed

Like the reject from the assembly line that got tossed in the seconds box, unfit for perfection

Unless someone was willing to ignore irregularity *shudder* 

He carried on his conversation with himself , no chance to interject for her 

And her head carried her away to where the clowns danced, falling over

To a place she wasn’t irregular , a second, or a freak.

She had entered the land of the other oddities and she thought she quite liked it.

Golden copper beacons

Eyes of tawny copper flash a warning signal
Like a beacon from the lighthouse
Beware,  beware,  the rocks of ruin lie ahead
They show warmth,  love, lust, anger, and warning
You plough ahead knowing everything about nothing
Ignore the signals wildly flashing
Convinced you will be her downfall and damnation
Forward you go to the badlands, the dark place
Copper eyes shoot sparks as she destroys your ship of fools
Using only words as her weapons
As the eyes grow darker your fate is sealed
And you go forth grateful for an ending.
Any ending will do
The eyes like the storm have stopped flashing
No longer available to bestow light on you
And you lie wrecked wishing you had heeded their warning
It was not the challenge you mistook it for
The first flashes were open friendly
You chose hostility and fought a self made battle
And lost to the golden copper eyes
Foolish to the very last.

©AilsaCawley Poetry 2015

Crones end

The old crone watches, eyes scanning for chances to gain
More to add to the purse hanging from her wrist on a chain
Nodding and smirking of her grizzled grey head
Cackles escape now it’s almost the day of the dead
She has gold aplenty but will spend not one piece
On something so tasty from cauldron will feast
One tooth sticking forward like a tombstone
Your body shivers telling you she can crunch through bone
What will you be on her table of feasting?
Looking back gingerly to the plate from your eating
And she’s moved leaving behind a most pretty young girl
Large blue eyes and long golden curls
Can you help me to find my old grandma she asks?
I have neglected her for other more exciting tasks
She hangs her head, tears in her eyes
Do you have the heart to watch as she worries and cries?
Through the door you’d never seen in the wall
The world is silent no birds seem to now call
Turning to speak to her changes you now see
Sweet voice of the old crone, young girl saying this is me.
Mocking you as your confusion she clearly observes
My sweet you had to see what your heart did desire
To not lose your mind,  your humanity,  nerves.
I was never to hurt you just open your mind
Now go home young one leave prejudice behind.

©AilsaCawley Poetry 2015

Ghost slaying

Sometimes you find it necessary to walk back where they reside
For there’s only so long that it works,  hiding
Not always needed to be able to go revisit
The bad stuff I found can be exorcised mostly
So similar are they to any night time haunting
Turn a corner and see a former life living there
And it has to be given the nod a simple action
That it existed in the other world
But it may be close enough to touch while it’s a light year away
Give it gentle acknowledgement of being there
Then gently wish it peace and be gone
It will take it’s leave only if you allow it
Let it go free to float like a feather blown on the wind
Deep breath in and out fill you with newness
No need to forget,  but don’t live there.
Let ghosts be slain if they bring pain.
Choose your energy to be from the heart
Ensure it’s not fighting the painful demons of long ago.

©AilsaCawley Poetry 2015

The cat and the seagull

Such vivid, multi coloured dreams that swish and swirl

As she rests at night her work is only just beginning

For as much as she tries to turn away her eyes from the impending storm 

They take on a will of their own

Draw her back to where they demand her vision be trained

Momentarily, she sees only a wave, spray from the sea

Her mind clearing, stubborn heart softening she watches from within

And for the first time she sees , where it was hidden in plain sight 

The seagulls call out warnings to one another ‘stay back’

Braver souls scream, screech and carry on their daily battle

With the cat in hiding 

No ordinary feline that sits on the window seat purring 

She is the cat who can calm, charm the storm cat 

Making him over into the kitten he was many moons ago 

While one lonely seagull sits on a cliff side, 

Unsure of what he did so wrong that he is punished by loneliness 

Till the time they both take their eternal rest 

But will they ? Their memories linger after they depart the earth 

You may see them around the village 

One flying higher than possible for a gull

The other singing calming, hypnotic lullabies to the storm cat.
©Ailsa Cawley Poetry 2015
*This is a compilation and tribute to the books Jonathan Livingston Seagull and The Mousehole Cat by Richard Bach and Antonia Barber/Nicola Bayley respectively*


She rode the wind that danced upon the waves
Flaxen hair trailing out like the tendrils of an octopus
Sapphire eyes that shone as beacons to lost ships
And sparks shooting from her slight body
So many her whole body seemed to have a current of it’s very own making.
A hand in front of her pointing out to sea
Her fingers straight and commanding the very elements
Towards the shores an old man watches transfixed
As the beautiful maiden in the shimmering garment comes closer
He sighs as she reaches the surf line separating sea from sand
Sleepy now his head nods as a voice as smooth as liquid silver
Speaks to urge rest
He tries to fight like a child at bed time
Urgently she says ‘if you see me I cease to exist my friend ‘
Obediently his eyes close despite his minds protest
He wakes,  and she is nowhere to be seen.
Never finds out in waking hours who she was
But on the sand he hears a whispered ‘thank you ‘

©AilsaCawley Poetry 2015

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