Poignant peace from Pete (sic)


Muriel Wilson, played with her granddaughter Rosie on the back lawn of her Nottinghamshire bungalow. The little girl pretended to be a teacher, with her rag doll, Barbie doll, cuddly dog, ginger cat and tatty teddy bear as pupils.

The scene was so lovely, that her grandma couldn’t resist taking a photograph; a chance not to be missed.

Later that afternoon, after Rosie’s mum had collected her, Muriel printed the picture off, on her computer. Smiling at the image, she suddenly looked quite shocked; for there in one of the bedroom windows stood, a uniformed figure looking out. For a few minutes, she just stood starring at the picture, totally transfixed. “Oh! My goodness gracious! Who can that be!?” she thought. “There was nobody in the house. It can’t be a ghost? Can it?”

Having a thought, she headed to the next door neighbour’s, knowing he was a scientist and owned a magnifying machine. This would afford her a clearer image.

Inviting her in, the Sherman’s quickly set the machine up on thekitchen table, each of them unable to hide their excitement.

Mr. Sherman slid the photograph under the lens; the imageappearing on the screen, into which they all peered.

“Come on Bruce, can’t you get a better resolution than that?” askedhis wife.

“Just have a little patience my dear.” “But we want to see who it is.” “Yes; and so do I, Doris, so do I”

As the image became crystal clear, Muriel frowned. “I’m sure I’ve seen that face before. I think it’s in one of our old family albums.” Once back home, she immediately headed for the attic, trying to think whereabouts they would be. Eventually she located them at the bottom of a dusty trunk, beside the chimney breast. She carried them down to the bedroom where the suspected ghost had been seen. Carefully she thumbed through each well worn out and threadbare album, page by page, until eventually, there he was, a uniformed soldier staring back at her.

Removing the picture very carefully, she hurried back round to the Sherman’s, in the knowledge of knowing exact(y^e was. Handing the picture to Mr. Sherman she smiled. “It’s my great, great, Uncle Thomas Wilson.”

“What do you know about him?” asked Mrs. Sherman.

“Not a lot really, in fact nothing at all.”

Mrs. Sherman looked a little surprised. “Nothing at all?”

Muriel shook her head. “It was a taboo subject. The family nevertalked about him.”

“Why was that?”

“That, I just don’t know.”

Returning home to replace the snapshot, she was stopped in her tacks. Standing in the doorway, she could see the empty space in the album, now had a folded note on it. Slowly she picked it up. It read:



“Why did they have to shoot me. I couldn’t help it!”


IN LIFE’S WINTER by Barrie Purnell


When your life enters a winter spell it can be difficult to face,
You feel alone and isolated in a bleak and hostile place.
A place where only pain and hurt are available on demand,
Where the people all around you don’t appear to understand.
The bitter winds send withered leaves whirling around your feet,
No moon lights your way down the endless barren street.
Jack Frost sets an ambush for you in the icy cobbled yard,
You are just one more reluctant actor in life’s cruel charade.

The clouds are weeping tears for your summertime’s demise,
The leafless trees forlorn and downcast in their winter guise.
An avalanche of your sorrows flows from winter’s cruel mouth,
The spectral grey sky decorated by the last geese flying south.
The condensation on the window panes does its best to hide,
The white crests of the breakers on the wind whipped sea outside.
The sound of surf is masked by the moaning of the wind,
It’s as if the gods are punishing us, it’s as if they know we’ve sinned.
You know the bitterness of winter is just the price you have to pay,
For the fresh taste of summer berries and the roses sweet bouquet.
Desolate days stretch out before you, you must wait for them to end,
Until then you’ll survive on memories of summer days with friends.
Life’s winters remind us that we cannot pick and choose our season,
There is no point in us mere mortals trying to fathom out the reason
Despite your disbelief, that any deity has control of your affairs,
You kneel before a Buddha and tease some other god with prayers.

Mortality is all we’ve got, that’s why I’m hanging on hard to you.
You say dreams are your reality. pain the only thing that’s true.
You think you’ve lost control of everything, but you still own the way you feel,
You let morphine steal your hurt but not the love we own that’s real.
I tell you I know how you’re feeling, but your pain cuts through my bluff,
I am trying hard to love you better but know it’s still not good enough.
I long to ambush your agony and cure you with one kiss or tender touch,
Please don’t make me feel a stranger, just because I’m loving you too much.

When we can walk again through dew wrapped grass under a crystal sky,
And the birds are singing love songs, which seem to invite you to reply,
Look to the sun, each day it wins its’ battle with the suffocating night,
You’re not asking me for pity, just freedom from pains relentless bite.
You see the spring sunshine reflecting off the languorous morning tide,
And know that, however hard your winter, you and beauty have survived.
So don’t despair, believe, there is still time, your race is not yet run,
Fix your eyes on the eastern horizon you’ll be the first see the sun.
Your heart will beat away the pain, your spirit will win the final war,
We’ll have time to walk again as lovers, between the ocean and the shore.

Shaped by Faymarie Morris

Moaning, like some long lost, tortured soul 
            the wind strained to be heard. Outside, inky blackness. 
               Shapeless, without form, stretching away into eternity. 
                No stars. No moon to light the night 
or show the way the way. 
                A muffled rustling 
              A muffled sound 
            was heard, 
             by frenzied flapping
                                         she peered 
Earlier, rain hammered on the roof then stopped. Silence, until 
the wind returned, like a hungry beast and battered the eaves. 
All night long it's pain was heard and sleep denied. 
Fingers of light stretched through the gloom
before shuffling off, towards morning. 
Formlessness was gone and with it,
fear. Trees buckled by the wind
and snow stood firm in daylight. 
Venturing outside, what she'd 
thought was a blackbird with
 wings trapped, had been 
ugly black plastic.
 Her  relief soon 
turned into 
                               anger                                                                                into anger.
The wind strained to be heard, then, like some long lost, 
tortured soul, it moaned.

Global Warming by Chris South

Our Profile Picture of the loveseat in King’s Park Retford during the big floods speaks many words. Writing is very much about reflections.
This response from Virtual Member, Chris, is also a comment on weather for our trigger inspired by cancellation of our meeting because of snow.

Global Warming by Chris South
(You call this summer?)

The earth is getting warmer
(Or so the experts say)
But if this really is the case
Then why does it snow in May?
Why is it always raining?
And why is the wind so cold?
So I’m complaining
About always being told
That the earth is getting warmer
Surely experts wouldn’t lie
Not while there’s a giant red
Satsuma in the sky!
But isn’t that the problem
The sun is just too hot
The earth is soaking up the rays
Like tissues soak up snot?
I’m no scientific expert
As you can plainly see
But it’s a reasonable assumption
(Well, it is at least for me)
The earth is getting warmer
And they’re blaming CO2
So we’ve got to cut emissions
Or live in a canoe
With ocean levels rising
As the polar ice caps thaw
Every single time I fart
They melt a little more!
If the earth is getting warmer
Due to all the planes and cars
None of us will travel soon
(Except to conquer Mars???)
In the name of conservation
Or just another stealthy tax?
I wish those green campaigners
Would just get off our backs!
I look after the environment
Have been doing so for years
I drown in plastic bottles
Cardboard floats around my ears

I’m underground, overground
Wombling free
Recycling all of the crap that I see
Bagging up all of the junk I can find
Garbage the council blokes still leave behind!

I use power saving light bulbs
‘A’ rated appliances too
I always think
How bad does it stink?
Before I flush the loo
My heating stays on 20c
Even when it’s cold and dank
So I use the car for work
It’s not a sodding tank
I fly on average once a year
(Long haul hardly ever)
And they’ve knackered up our railways
Which really wasn’t clever?
So if the earth is getting warmer
It’s not my bloody fault
Don’t try and squeeze my bollocks
Til there’s nothing left but salt
If I have a carbon footprint
It’s the tip of my little toe
Compared to that of industry
Whose boots have got to go
But what about the third world?
They’re carbon trading too!
So the poorest people die
To balance our CO2?
It’s clear in my opinion
Global Warming’s just a farce
I think these so called ‘experts’
Are all talking from their arse!

IF I COULD DO IT ALL AGAIN by Barrie Purnell

Barrie’s response to the trigger ‘fall’:

IF I COULD DO IT ALL AGAIN by Barrie Purnell

When each year seemed forever
And I was young, as I recall
Nothing was beyond my reach,
I thought I had it all.

All my silver and all my gold,
That emerald egg by Faberge,
If I could do it all again
For her I’d give it all away.

Just one of Casanova’s congregation,
Scavenging for love they may let fall,
Pretending I’m still in the game
But knowing I’ve lost it all.

Alone I lie here waiting
For the darkness that will fall,
If I could love her just one more time
She could have it all.

If I could do it all again
There would be no more lies,
No more insincere goodbyes.
I would kiss her lips more sweetly,
Love her more completely.

It was she who had the need
I could not see beyond my greed.
With so many lovers still to find
The register remained unsigned.

Back then our love was newly born,
Now the wedding dress is torn.
I had my chance, I chose to hide.
Now it’s too late to turn the tide.

I squandered far too many years,
I was the cause of far too many tears.
The sad rain falls, night winds wail,
I see her face through a funeral veil.

I am where death will come to die,
Where each tormented breath’s a sigh,
I fear my prayers will be in vain
For time to do it all again.

When she came to me in sorrow
I offered her everything that’s mine
She said she never coveted my riches
All she had wanted was my time

Now I’m getting near the end,
Close enough to hear him call,
Look at the beggar I’ve become
When I could have had it all.

Inside my world of pain
Her love is all I know,
If I could do it all again
I would have never let her go.