Noli Me Tangere (or Keep Your Distance)

Photo by Gustavo Fring on

Hugging him, Embracing her,
Are very clearly now ruled OUT.
No Touching, feeling, gripping, grabbing,
That is a law we must not flout.

A kiss, a cuddle? … Better not,
Intimacy is not allowed;
Feel, pinch, rub are all verboten,
All off-limits – Shout it loud!

So please don’t touch me, don’t come near,
Stay apart, just keep your distance;
Take a powder, keep away,
You cannot come to my assistance.

No high Fives, no shaking hands,
No contact sports, no postman’s knock.
Life is grinding to a halt,
They’ve got us in a strict headlock.

So, if you feel like being contiguous
Remember the two metre rule,
Intimacy’s not now permitted,
It’s just like being back at school.

Courting couples, you have been warned,
Stap your vitals, Cool your ardour,
Or sure as rotten eggs is eggs
You’ll find yourself with a court order.

P ‘raps tactile anaesthesia’s needed
To stem our need to interact,
For touchy-feelies are no more,
Now that is just a matter of fact.

NOTE:  Noli me tangere (‘touch me not’) is the Latin version of a phrase spoken, according to John 20:17, by Jesus to Mary Magdalene when she recognized him after his resurrection. The biblical scene gave birth to a long series of depictions in Christian art from Late Antiquity to the present. Pre-Raphaelite painters of the mid and late 19th Century were particularly fond of this as a subject for their paintings.

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A Limited Life

abandoned ancient antique architecture

Photo by Pixabay on

A Limited Life

Take my breath away
yet let me live
my blinded eyes
they still can see the sun
I walk but cannot move
for fear to fall
my stulted words
restricted to my pen

Now all my thoughts
are centred on myself
not touch nor closeness
are allowed

to stunt my waking dreams
and life depends
on instant ends
the future makes no sense
and time has ceased

For now has lost its meaning
in the drift in which I live
day melds into night
and then returns
but only to repeat
its torpid trend
refusing to rekindle
that fire which burns
within my ashes urn



Wordsworth: Pastiche #4

man standing beside window

Photo by Jose Antonio Gallego Vu00e1zquez on

Each day this week I will publish a short 4-line verse, each one commencing with a well-known line, sometimes adapted to suit the context, from a renowned published poem.  The general theme is that of Isolation.


Wordsworth: Pastiche #4

( ‘Daffodils’: by William Wordsworth )


I wandered, lonely as a cloud

Keeping that two metre distance.

It’s very hard to live like this,

But it’s my line of least resistance.



Once Upon Another Time

silhouette photo of man and woman


Once Upon Another Time


Once upon another time
There lived a girl whose heart was mine.

For I loved her and she loved me,
Together we would always be.

But times have changed and so have we,
Allowing us new paths to see.

Those promises which once we kept
Have faded as we overslept.

And passing time and growing distance
Have slowly dulled, then killed, resistance.

Allowing other doors to open,
Other pledges to be spoken.

Until, as now, the past forgotten,
We venture on new paths untrodden.

To face a future, yet unknown,
Both of us left still alone.


love couple sunset sunrise

Photo by on

… At a Distance





At a distance … 
You observe the early morning sun
Reflected in the ripples of the pools on your shore.

sunset sea


Whilst … distantly … 
I walk my river bank
And catch the sunset’s glow.


I am more than aware of you,
Knowing something,
But not enough,
Of your past.

I am prompted to delve,
To interfere,
To imagine when our paths first crossed.
And why life didn’t turn out differently.

I’m happy that it didn’t;
Yet I’m sad that it did.

Paths met;  paths crossed ;
Moved on. 
Wildly apart;  Seriously separate.

Only, a lifetime later, across worlds,WorldsApart
to conjoin in distant musings.

A necessary caesura, a brief hiatus,
From pressing cares, from present bonds.

No future, no prospect,
No fulfilment or resolution.
A remote meeting of distant minds;
Sensibilities intertwined.
An informed harmony
Of art, music, poetry.

Two perceptions
Conjoined –
From a distance.


I give a link below to Nanci Griffith’s 1987 version of Julie Gould’s song . . .


From A Distance