The Wheel Bed

wheel bed

Tyring Platform or Wheel Bed

The Wheel Bed

The wood-burn tang remains,
purpose chosen
elm, oak and ash,
a pungent memory
burnt into my history;
childhood re-visited.

Metal rim fired,
it’s molten circle
beaten into flaky orange ring,
before,
from the flaming furnace, 
tongs at arms’ length, 
cast iron wrought and shaped, 
the new cart wheel
boldly borne
to the fitting-bed, 
its iron collar
to be burnt into place.

 
Then, 
ice cold water on fiery iron
sizzles, 
splash and spurt, 
heat relayed and remembered, 
felt and smelt, 
rooted in my molten memories.

Cold contracted, 
cooled into the tightest of fits, 
road ready, 
task worthy, 
winter prepared
and good to go. 

Another hole in the farmer’s pocket;
Another meal for the smith’s family;
Another tick of my life’s clock.

The vital wheels of forever – 
wood, iron, fire, water,
turning, as cogs
dependent each on each,
as carter, wheelwright, smith, farmer, 
primitive, elemental, 
part of my story
… and of me.

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Those who are familiar with my previous writing may recall my upbringing as the son of the village blacksmith. As such, I often watched my father, with hammer on anvil, create both large and small tyres of heated iron. I would look on in awe as, on a huge shaped ring of thick iron, the wheel-bed or platform, the iron tyre would be burned on to the wooden rim of a cartwheel, allowing the contraction of the iron on cooling to bind the wheel to the wood of the wheelwright’s frame.  Few such iron-wheeled carts remain in use.

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Christmas – Three Haiku of Hope

 

round brown wooden lanterns

Photo by Pradipna Lodh on Pexels.com

Christmas brings good cheer
But not to all God’s children
Pray time will change that.

Long has it been said
Hope came down at Christmas time
May that be true now

May Christmas bring love
As once it brought Lord Jesus
This Hope still remains.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As The Year Ends

Oriental Image #2-1988

WHB … Pen & Ink – 1988

AS THE YEAR ENDS

Dark the swollen river runs
Under the bridge’s shades of grey.
Slate sky condemns the passive scene
Draining colour from the day.

Tree silhouettes outline my view
Their winter ribs bared to the frost
December bids the old year gone
With no regrets for what is lost. 

The year expires; bid it goodbye, 
It brought distress, re-kindled fears,
It promised much it failed to give,
Left little hope and many tears.

So now, in hope of better times,
Tomorrow holds the future’s key.
New perspectives flood my view
Blue skies as far as I can see.

 

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Awaiting My Muse

art abstract exhibition colours

Photo by Judy Kim on Pexels.com

Thoughts
Ideas
Flicker-flow my mind

Suggestions
Ideas
Broil
Half-baked
Within its febrile cauldron

Magnetic impulses
Stir the mix
Threatening to connect
But rarely touching

Intuition sparks
But does not flame
Promise flat-lined

So many false dawns
So few horizons reached
Dawn’s promise
Resolved in mediocrity

 

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Lost and Never Found

If I speak with melancholy
If you sense despair,
Think no more of it
I have not quit –
It is a mask I wear.

One which, for sure, I do not relish;
I am not given to gloom.
Yet all unbidden,
No truth forbidden,
I cannot help but speak of doom.

For once upon a wintertime,
Hoar frost upon the ground,
I lost my love
To Him above:
Never again to be found.

Waving Goodbye

at the end of a day

Photo by Monique Laats on Pexels.com

Waving Goodbye

 

Tomorrow threatens not to come

And so I grab at life Today

That ever was Man’s threnody

Through Doubt and Hope to make our way.

And when in truth all light has passed

And Darkness fills the Void with Fear

I realise with certainty

That then, at last, my God is near.

Those who remain to carry on

Carry the Labyrinth’s thread on high,

So human life is held in thrall

Forever set to wave Goodbye.

 

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