All posts tagged: folklore

Trickle Down – Working On Writing During Lock-down

At the start of this year I was planning on which poetry events I wanted to go to in order to publicise my new collection ‘It’s All In The Blood‘. I managed a few local ones, and had a slot booked to perform at a Ludlow poetry night, right at the beginning of March. Then 2020 hit its stride in the UK.  Flooding meant that I wasn’t able to get to Ludlow, and lockdown meant no more poetry nights. What was supposed to be a year of poetry and readings, turned into four months of searching for new nooks and crannies in the house to reorganise. Of course I started off with the best intentions. I was going to finish my novel, work on my next collection of poems, and submit to every journal and competition under the sun. I did work on my novel, and I did write a few new poems, but I’m not close to finishing either project. Submission went very much the same way. In fact I’ve spent the last two …

Is This Deity A Goddess Or Witch?

I tried swearing at the garden pond, to see if I could goad a water witch into dredging herself up at at ’em with enough pissed off vengeance to take at least one body down. I wasn’t decided on who I wanted, squealing in her webbed, wet grip. Half-thought if she came I’d go, grab her right back with both hands, test to see if she tasted stagnant, or like spring water breaking free after centuries underground.    

Playing With Lines Of Five #DVersePoets

Tanka – Deception The vines have curled up till she’s dressed within their arms. Astonishing green, to hide all the stress fractures now spider-webbing beneath.   Kyoka –  Toil Of A Water Witch Ginny Greenteeth waits, washes out last week’s litter from her pond weed hair. Snatches a plastic bottle like she would do a child. Ginny Greenteeth is from English folklore, and depending on your region her name can change from Ginny, to Jenny, or a number of other nom-de-plumes. It’s also the name used to refer to pond weed, or algae covering a pond’s surface and obscuring the water from view. She apparently lurks below the cover of the pond weed waiting for passersby to wander too close, so she can drag them to their watery depths.  There are perhaps some waterways that wouldn’t be particular pleasant to skulk in these days. Gogyohka – After The Storm We eye the horizon like a child, question our certainty that the crying is done. Slowly, we return ourselves to the garden, we peg the washing out while …

It Isn’t The Princess Who Needs Saving #DVersePoets

In the market they are talking about last week’s linens, still strung across the garden beneath skies dazzling blue.   The butcher’s wife does not like the cats with their black cloaks, stalking the briar patch at night, bright eyes like guttering candles.   Her husbands claims superstition, but distrusts the foxglove purple swords, the nightshade, the mistletoe, the cut stems by the hedgerow.   Forgets who birthed their last child, almost blue and so brokenly quiet. Breathed that first cry into him when they though him too far gone.   But there’s the girl and her tears, and her husband raging for some sort of explanation as to why the seed won’t take.   And why this year’s harvest failed, and the Harlow’s pig got sick, and the men from the church came and hung a witch out.   I’m going to admit, this poem got away from me somewhat, and I’m really not sure how I feel about the ending. Still, I hope you like where I took tonight dVerse prompt. I only …

Water Song – #DVersePoets

I want to sink bells into the pond. Plant them just below the waterline, where the ripples look like scales lifting out of the shallows slowly on the back of an endless snake. Then at night when the moon lifts, turns her face to watch, I’ll slip out onto the decking, strip down to my silver skin. Drop like a stone or a witch into the quiet cold of a place not quite what I wish of it. Wonder as the bells ring out if anyone else may be listening. There’s a lot of Shropshire Folklore about women and water. The River Severn is often characterised as female, and there are tales of women (or women-like creatures) inhabiting lakes and ponds. Another image in Shropshire folk tales, is that of church bells falling into water and being lost forever, but the sound of their ringing being heard at night. I’ve always been in love with myths and legends, but more often than not it was the classic Greek, Egyptian, and Norse myths that I turned …