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The Run away land by Violet B, Year 9 Ripley St Thomas

I ran away from the grim face of society,
The dizzying climate of the city,
Moving my step towards tranquillity,
I stood there, letting it enter my soul,

How can beauty like yours be committed to live in this place,
I listen again to the whispering waves,
Music of nature, calming but so loud
The birds humming their silent songs,

Beauty is that which attracts your soul,
I reached a lonely spot were the sand meets sea,
The runaway land is the place to be,
Oh, Orkneys how you call to me.

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Rum kissed by Sue Keenan

Rum kissed, they lie in next door loungers.
The sun is less harsh now,
Spreading twinkling light on the blue.
After twenty five years they know how the other works.
He’s playing his Irish rebel songs.
She’s slightly awkward about annoying other people.
And the daily stresses and annoyances slide away with the burn of the rum on their throats
They are catching up. They find they are still connected. They are both ok with this.
He silently tops up her glass.
She smiles her thanks, returns to her book.

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To Travel Hopelessly by Mary Hodges

Frantic rush to get away from it all
snap shut the suitcase lid
on the daily frustrations,
seeking escape by moving on,
searching out new places, new sights,
new sounds, new feelings,
till travel becomes an end in itself
the journey its own justification.

Mad dash down the motorway,
tantalising wait in traffic jams
a struggle to escape from thinking
by moving on.
Never realising – or never admitting –
that it simply can’t be done.

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Nature Cure by Cora Greenhill

Neglect your child. Set her free to find home
in bogs brash with marigolds, cuckoo flowers,
harebells in heather.

She’ll dawdle the braes peeling rushes,
find green valleys tender,
dream alone by a loch on Bin Mountain.

Lay no tables. She’ll know
to slip a hand under the maran’s downy breast
for warm eggs; learn to make fire,

build shelters in hollows of bracken
– she’d rather watch fine rain fall
than feel the cold stove.

Or she’ll slink to cottages
where embers wink
under black-bellied pots of purties:

a sprinkle of salt, a cup of blue milk
with a wrinkle of cream from the churn.
A curl of new kittens to hold.

She’ll mount an old donkey with fostered boys
split skin in a fall, let them laugh,
spit on grazed hands.

When navy serge stiffens with first blood
she’ll know the stale smell of herself – her shame
and knuckles blistered scrubbing stains.

But alone she’ll find her own wild cries,
hidden in hay bales and on branches rising
to open skies. She never was yours.

She’ll hitch-hike to Istanbul
sleep under new arrangements of stars
with the half moon lying back.

She’ll not know where a day
will put her down, may learn to trust
the mysterious kindness of strangers.

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Sky / seagull by Paul Fisher

Heaven is not a place on earth
But It is here;
here in these clouds,
Sailing and soaring at the whim of the wind
Amongst the dust and droplets of water.

Some days I dream and
I look toward the deep blue above;
Toward space and I see
Those human built birds,
Lines of cotton trailing in their wakes
A vapour drawn track I wish to fly

I dream of travelling to where they travel
To distant shores and ancient monuments
To hear the Arias sung and poems said,
To expand the horizon
Of my scavenged cuisine
And my repertoire of dissonant song.

I dream of visiting a star or a planet,
a satellite or a moon, Icarus to the galaxy
Looking down onto this broken earth
or into the past when we birds ruled the roost
The ornitho-empire of the sky
The winged fingers of pre history

Still and all……
dreaming’s for the birds
I must set my course
I must do my life’s work
I am the chippy kleptomaniac
I am the raucous disturber of your seaside sleep
I must stripe your cars with guano
And call out my own soliloquy of love.