My sincere thanks to Lucy for hosting me on her excellent website. For my guest post, in which I discuss how Spa Wood (and nature more generally) influences my writing, please visit here, https://wp.me/pawefW-1T5.
The path taken less often than I should,
This tranquil track through a nearby wood.
A spot with trees for walls
Where sunlight through the branches falls.
An oasis from the urban din
I find a quiet place within.
An inner space where the heart can be still,
A peaceful spot on this wooded hill.
The path to the road ascends.
A cloud of gloom on me descends.
I must return to this rented land
Where advertising hoardings stand.
A world where empty vessels make most noise,
And people play with broken toys.
“The Path Through the Wood” can be found in my collection, “Lost in the Labyrinth of My Mind”, which is available in the Amazon Kindle store, https://www.amazon.com/Lost-labyrinth-my-mind-Morris-ebook/dp/B01AF5EPVY/.
The poem was inspired by my walks through Spa Woods, an ancient area of woodland which I am lucky enough to have very close to my home. You can find out about Spa Woods here, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spa_Wood.
The photographs show wooden sculptures in the woods
My thanks to my friend Shanelle for taking the below photographs, which show me holding a copy of my recently released Selected Poems. For anyone who is visually impaired, the front cover shows a close up image of bluebells in Spa Woods, a wooded area close to the poets home in Upper Norwood. Spa Woods was once part of The Great North Wood, and contains many ancient oaks. The back cover is also shown, and displays a picture of the poet at the entrance to Spa Woods, close to an historic house.
In this wood,
In parts overgrown
I walked alone,
Yet I had a myriad tree
Then the rain came
And I was free,
For I am part
Of the wood’s heart
Which lives in me.
On the evening of Sunday 29 September, I was privileged to meet Sally Walford and her partner in my favourite Bangladeshi restaurant.
I had seen Sally on several previous occasions. However I had not had the pleasure of conversing with her until Sunday evening.
I was intrigued to find that Sally is a children’s author and has published “The Clutter Monster”, The book description of which reads as follows:
“The Clutter Monster lives in the land of Mess, a monster who loves nothing more than very messy children and very messy playrooms.
This story for children , The Clutter Monster, tells the tale of one dark night when two messy children are spotted by The Clutter Monster.
Only The Decluttering Dog has the secret of how to make the Monster go.
Will he get to them in time to save their fate?
This delightful tale encourages children to tidy up their toys and keep on top of that clutter!”.
Whilst I haven’t read “The Clutter Monster”, I see from Amazon and Goodreads that the book has received a number of excelent reviews.
You can find out more about “The Clutter Monster” by Sally Walford here, https://thecluttermonster.com.
What do the bells of All Saints say
On this cold spring day?
Is it “repent?”
Or a lament,
For a civilisation that is dying?
I can not say.
The above poem was inspired by me hearing the bells of All Saints Church, as I passed through the churchyard on the morning of Sunday 5th May 2019). You can find All Saints Upper Norwood here, http://www.allsaintsuppernorwood.co.uk/).
In the churchyard
With it’s gnarled bark
Will outlast me.
This thought, to some stark
For my heart
Of this self-same tree.
The flowers as I
That they will die?
I paused and smelt
Their slim stem that I
Could so easily break.
I chose not to take
And did the blooms forsake
Know that they shall die
The above pictures were taken in Spa Wood, SE19.
Upper Norwood is extremely hilly, hence the title of this poem, “The Poet On The Hill”:
Several of my poems have been inspired by the Great North Wood, one of the remnents of which is some 2-3 minutes walk from my home, http://www.wildlondon.org.uk/great-north-wood. I have spent many hours walking my dogs in Spa Woods, which form part of The Lawns, https://www.croydon.gov.uk/leisure/parksandopenspaces/parksatoz/the-lawns.
This afternoon I came across several volunteers from The Great North Wood/The Friends of Spa Woods engaged in conservation. A bonfire was going and invasive plants (laurel introduced in the Victorian era) was in the process of being removed to prevent it from stifling the growth of native flora.
The wonderful thing about The Lawns is that it was left to the local community and it is maintained by volunteers, who do excellent work to ensure that it remains a real oasis, which can be enjoyed by dog walkers and anyone in search of a little peace and tranquillity.
Below are examples of those poems of mine which have been influenced by my proximity to (and connection with) The Great North Wood:
The Path Through The Woods – https://newauthoronline.com/2017/04/03/k-morris-reading-his-poem-the-path-through-the-woods/
Wood In The Rain – https://rhymepoetry.wordpress.com/2017/05/21/wood-in-the-rain/
Owl – https://newauthoronline.com/2016/07/17/owl-2/
An Owl Hunting – https://newauthoronline.com/2016/03/31/an-owl-hunting/