Below are 3 poems by my friend, Toby Wheeler. The poems are copyright, Toby Wheeler and may not be reproduced without the prior permission in writing of Toby Wheeler.
Walking in the back woods,
Drained, instilled with dread,
I huddle down to tie my shoes,
Torn and pushed by the next lad down;
Off they would walk whilst smirking back
With mud stuck to my knees;
I asked them to wait, I would plead,
But they just carried on, my cries they went unheeded.
They did not care as I trundled behind,
Stomping on untied threads,
And the wind would howl and blow the trees,
With their distant laugh an echo in the leaves.
‘Wait’, I yelled, where are you now?
No answer was supplied,
Confused, I’d grapple and wonder why
They did not see me as equal in their eyes.
I start to run along the path, up to the forest gate,
But then I caught a branch and fell,
Tripped face first into the well,
‘Wait up guys’, in winded pain,
I raise myself and wipe my face,
I start to cry as tears form
Whilst bending down to tie my lace;
Now upset, now so angry, feeling hurt and turning blue,
I look up now and look around,
And so the silence surrounds me,
It approached while tying my shoes
The Power of Persuasion
Was that a trick of the light?
A phantom in the cupboard?
Was that the anger of a poltergeist,
Or the sound of a crying child?
There’s a face I can see in the shadows,
The smell of a haunted lover,
The moaning of a Cromwellian soldier screams on Roundaway Down
A door that creaks
The roof that leaks
The sink that taps at night,
The power of persuasion, can cause all kind of frights.
I see a ghost in St. John’s church
I see a man stand by his grave
I see a bride who’s aged, scourned and mourning
I see a fire that caused a death
A man who died alone in his bed,
And a soldier who died by the sword.
The leaves that rustle
The bell that chimes
The clock who’s ghost appears at nine;
The power of persuasion, can haunt us all tonight.
Perspectives from a corner in the pub
By Toby Wheeler
Anytime I could be here, writing in a pub;
But it happens that today I’m in this one;
Drowning my poison in horseful gulps, the precious liquor like liquid gold on my tongue.
As the man plucks his guitar and friends natter, the barman pushing pints for souls reaching out for the best type of dole;
The exposed walls offering some kind of numbing comfort that there’s something between me and the world outside as an old friend sits at the bar staring at the glass half empty; he doesn’t see me so I don’t approach, we left on bad terms.
Anything to avoid the large antique mirror pasted on the wall; I don’t want to see the anxious face that stares back, the warmth in his eyes lost after too many years of finding perspectives from a corner in the pub.