Crawling out of the Poetic Rut

Inspired by a recent article on the Brain Pickings website I decided to set myself a few writing challenges – mainly to re-gain focus and to write with intention to stretch my Muse a wee bit (yes, she has become a little bit too comfy where she is right now).

So I did some browsing and put together my own list of writing prompts that I will use for the next few months.

My first one was Paperclips and Trains and resulted in a poem about a call centre.  This is a first draft and very much work in progress but happy to hear your thoughts.

Call Centre

At first
explosion of noise in a row of phones, gongs
of ringtones, faceless voices in discord: bored,
chirpy, confused, irate, ‘Whatever you say sir’
‘It does not matter’, chattering fingers drum
keyboards, screens flare up with targets,
excel, always, think success even when you fail

to impress that new girl two desks away.

The lucky ones escape at lunch time, huddle outside,

 stare at blue smoke rings disperse to staccato of trains
going anywhere but here.  The railway peters out
into the silent hills. The employees shuffle back

 to their chairs, put their customer first and tighten

the cords round their turkey necks. Beam, do not dare

to leave them hanging in no resolution air.

Live and breathe customer care.

5.01pm – a light bulb hesitates, then goes out; distant
billboard swallows the last slice of the sun and a man
hides his head behind the fence of his hands. A chain
of paperclips sways on his outbreath. One last ring.
Then silence.

I am linking this post with Stephanie at The Beautiful Misbehaviour (a great website for creative women) – Writing Warriors is a great new linky where you can share your writing progress, exorcise your poetic demons or ask for feedback on your work.

Blog Your Heart Out


The hilarious Cathy from the Wicked World of Lucas has recently surprised me with a fab nomination for a ‘Blog Your Heart Out’ Award.  If you have never read Cathy’s blog, you are missing out on a few giggles!

Blog Your Heart Out Award is about answering five questions (honestly!) and nominating five great bloggers.

Here are my answers:

1. What/Who encouraged you to start blogging?

I have always been an obsessive writer and reader but I have a very short attention span and used to lack discipline.

I have a theory that road to hell is paved with writers’ unfinished ‘projects’, especially mine… And so one day I had this idea, why not try blogging?  That way if I had any readers (even if it was just one) I would feel bad if I did not live up to their (my imaginary) expectations.

In the meantime, I gained a following of real readers, re-gained my confidence as a writer, had a poem published in a magazine, released my first ebook and I have discovered so many inspiring and talented bloggers.

The bloggy universe has no limits!

2. How did you choose what topics to blog about?
I get inspired by anything, from Peanut’s daily antics to something I have heard on the radio or read in the paper and as ‘chaotic’ as it may sound I do not have a strict plan for my blog.

Somehow it has evolved into a mix of poetry, parenting and odd cartoons and who knows what’s around the corner!

3. What is something most people don’t know about you?
When I was a teenager someone asked me to write a poem for them, they then submitted it to a big poetry competition run by a publishing house and my poem won!  Unfortunately, as a ghost-poet I never got any recognition. *sad face*

Also, I’m allergic to knitting and once upon a time I almost skied into Prince Charles but that’s a different story altogether…

4. What 3 words describe your style? 

Creative, eclectic and a bit of a dreamer…

5. What do you like to do when you are not blogging?

Play with my son. Do yoga and meditate. Watch films with and chat to BlueBeretDad.  Drink wine with my friends. Read.  Listen to Radio 4 podcasts.  Have chocolate cake for breakfast, lunch and dinner.  Not necessarily in that order.

And here I am with my dark secrets and all.

Now over to five remarkable bloggers:

  1. Time Waits for No Mum
  2. Beautiful Misbehaviour
  3. The Reading Residence
  4. Mum Turned Mom
  5. Pinkoddy



A Japanese poem.  A contracted form of haikai no ku ‘light verse’.  It has seventeen syllables, in three lines of five, seven, and five, traditionally evoking images of the natural world.

After some head scratching, nail biting and pondering I decided to scribble some poetry and show it to the cyber world.  So here are my three haiku and motherhood inspired poems. 

Dummy in my shoe

Far away, a baby cries

Pink cherry blossom


Child’s hand in mine

Two shadows on the pavement

Seven seagulls shriek


Water splish-splash

Evening bath – silver laugh

Cross car horn outside