War is Death.

Appalled and angry he stares after the lifting fuselage.

By his side his children sit in the dirt, with the whiff

of kerosene in their nostrils and their weeping mother 

trying to make sense of the inexplicable losses.


Firing weapons raise smoke to sun kissed skies,

now nowhere will be safe from their anger and hate,

together they try and understand the meaning and

imagining driving further, threats on every corner,

while soldiers clean their guns and wipe blood off

where weapons have invaded their fragile bodies,

and somewhere a general orders his men to kill

and kill and to kill again until he is all powerful.

A fragile world where death is ready to invade each

corner of life, overheating oceans and desertifying

the beautiful land – for selfishness and blind greed, 

and still they sow violence, burning and violating


their own, their land

and their hope

and everything loses.

The Trenches

Mud like superglue, makes battle grim,

mountains of slimed clothes, never clean,

boots feel like leaden weights

and the humble sandwich tastes like dirt.

The sweet face of a friend sinks down,

leaving the grief to to fight and show

that this hell is more than enough,

and bitterness bloats the corpse.


Precious moments in the lull to look,

birds have flown, they’ve more sense,

the sun dimmed by the bloody gore

and clouds unwelcome pour more mud.


Soon, too soon, they’ll all be gone,

and their death song forgotten,

all that will be left is the tragic

cry of the bereft childless mother.


We grow old in ancient lore

but never learn to abandon war.

Do they even care?

Sewage on our beaches

government beyond our reaches,

history did not teach us

and now they cling like leeches,


feeding off the poor, 

slamming shut the door,

hunger comes with a roar

and they say they’re sticking to the law.

Crisis costs will rise, 

Will they hear the dying sighs?

Will they finally raise their eyes?

And free them from wealthy ties.


Money goes into their coffers,

and kindness will make offers

of tins, beans, tea against the scoffers

and cars driven by chauffeurs.


Shivering inside from all ills,

chemist can’t get the right pills.

Climate crisis worsens and kills.

Who can save us from their selfish wills?

A voice in the Wilderness of War

One tiny bird, atop the blasted tree,

fluffed its downy golden breast,

opened its shining beak and sang 

a new song, from

its heart, over the dying.


Oppression, violence, vice, violation

of my land, killed chirruping chicks,

blasted my family while I flew afar.

These are my lyrics,

breaking me as they died.


They came in filthy smoking tanks,

despoiling, destroying, draining

the joy that lived here and cherished

every gift from God,

now ground from life to death.


I sing over the bodies of children,

their future ripped from their hands

by cowardly men dressed as heroes.

Their souls gone, can never be replaced

their hearts gone for aye.


Fluttering down to the ruined earth,

he saw that hope had been annihilated,

each ruinous act of hate deactivated

the spark of life

generated in love.


Still he opened his throstle, and chanted

his prayer, that despair will die and each

root of hopefulness will bring grace

and the shattered land

shelter life again. 

War on Refugees

Huddling close for warmth they gripped each other’s hands,

the ragged clothes hardly covering their shrunken flesh,

their sore covered faces closed eyes that had lost their light,

no one would come but those displaced, empty handed,

starving families, children like theirs dying slowly into

the corrupt earth.


Governments rage against refugees, refusing to grant

them a chance to be free and a shaft of hope of life.

They go to their worship where they hear of a God

who cares about humans and the ravaged planet,

and turn blind backs on the horror of displacement

and dine richly.


Charities working give them hope in clothes and food,

but no-one can help them while terrible traffickers 

take their coins for frightening travel, cons and lies,

promising heaven and giving them hell, while those 

who could stand for justice and mercy choose hatred

punish the innocent.

Now politicians think up wicked schemes and plot

to send them to countries violating human rights,

spending our money to perpetrate crimes against

humanity, binding them in chains and sending them

away to suffer more, be killed and so Pilate Patel

washes her hands.

Palms or Arms

He boldly went on a bewildered donkey,

batting the flies as they settled to feed on 

both their faces. The long ears of the ass

twitching and both hearts fast beating 

as the crowds around cried,”Hosanna!”

The strewed garments grimy and torn

by flocks of people waving branches,

claiming the humble man as their king,

hoping that he would take up arms,

fight their cause, banish the Romans.


He tried to unclench his teeth and let go,

smelled the fresh scent of broken palms,

and touched the dark, rough haired, long

eared head. They began to walk slowly,

plodding down the long, grave strewn hill.


He felt the eyes from the armed ramparts,

He lifted his dark brown eyes and looked,

The famed golden gates open, beckoning,

his gentle mouth fixed, his bowels churning,

Judas turns, smiling, his shouts the loudest,


The cool streets embraced the eager crowds.

He dismounted and sent the donkey away,

forever marked as a sign of suffering love.

Walking up the hill, the temple beckons

and they’re waiting on his every word.


‘Silence the citizens,’ called the objectors,

‘ Hush them? Remember the seeing stones 

violence, lechery, cheating, killing they know.

For the stones will cry out from the wall, 

calling God’s Kingdom of mercy and grace.


Thirsty he drank thankfully, Mary saw his need,

clearing his head, he reached out to heal,

to answer their questions, tell short stories,

think creatively when they try to box him in,

and then to Bethany, solace, peace and rest.

Prayer on the Front Line.

I pray for Ukraine,

that each blade of grass,

flowers, bees and beetles,

birds and butterflies .


I pray for their protection

against the avalanche

of violence and vile



I pray for each small child,

girl or boy, their school,

hospital, park and their

climbing tree.


I pray for their safety,

in the minds, bodies,

and, cast away from families,

to be safe from harm.


I pray for the mothers, who

wait by the phone,

fathers, changing a job

for tanks, missiles and a gun.


I pray for their hearts

that they don’t break,

that the abusive powers

relent – speaking words of peace.


I pray for the medics, 

short of supplies,

for the vets who cannot

save bomb blasted pets.

I pray that they’ve

healing hands, their touch

to be as Christ, – in the absence 

of enough of everything.


I pray for the governments,

choices they are making,

to save a people or

bury them in ash.


I pray for them to see with

a frightened child’s eyes,

to hear the cries with a

shattered mother’s heart.


I pray for the world powers,

to put aside their quarrels,

to open negotiations,

and work solely for peace.


Prayer is a voice in the wilderness,

a light in the darkness

and always on the front line

of any battle for any life.

Ukraine and Evil

She stepped over the grim reminder that somewhere, someone wants her dead,

harried, frightened, threatened, fastened to her people by a thread of vile, red

evil that looks to reject what was not perfect – but was the way they lived, and

gave of their best for their nation and now they ration their food and water.


He took their peace, he took his lying ease, saying that their race would cease,

for no reason,  only the season was right for his arrogant, derogatory rant.

They suffer his noise, their boys, from uni, in front lines with guns to try and

drive the poisonous actions of a deranged faction, a reaction of the paranoid.

No-one can ever win at war, there are only losers but evil succeeds in its

purpose to subvert, deny, destroy young lives, creating deserts in land and heart.

She hides behind the broken wall, hears the call of carrion crows and weeps,

her heart is broken and still his heart is cold, calculating and cruelty escalates.

A Cracked Pot

The pottery wheel brings the writhing clay to life,

its whirring pulses through the hands, moulding 

the sticky gooey mess, growing its potential and

finding its nature through touching, loving and

caressing the dirty lump until it reveals 

its hidden glory.

Steadily the rhythm grows and a shape is formed,

a vessel glad to be created, as the potter boldly

pulls and pursues the pleasure of sensing their

own power flowing into the clay, carefully seeing

beauty materialising with a sense of pride in 

its inner glory.

Decorated and fired the fluted vase stands, and

accepts admiration and the echoes of desire

to fulfil its purpose. But, the proud purchaser will 

decide.  Will it live out its lifeless life overflowing 

with tulips, lilies, lupins or empty as Art revealing

its outer glory?

What am I? 

The vase on show?

The cup to carry water to the thirsty?

The vase overflowing with beautiful flowers?

The squat pot full of plants that poison or pollute?

I know I am cracked broken by the pitfalls of living?

Did I resist the creator as divine love shaped my calling?

Or, will that passion of re-generation in the welcomed Spirit 

reveal through my cracks love’s amazing light, glory and grace?

War on Pregnant Women

It was the pregnant woman cradling her hope

that shook me, a brave baby born to turmoil, 

no real future, freedom of speech and the liberty

to choose a path where hissing missiles and 

guzzling guns will not overwhelm the fragile

life that sparks behind closed contented eyes.

A year ago a couple’s loving embraces creates

a foetus, cells growing and separating in her

wonderful womb – in a time of political peace

and their precious neighbours were not vilified

by Putin’s army of trolls, and a settled peoples 

scared for their very lives as weapons wrench

the ridged roofs from their heads and harry the

poor and cancer sick lying in their winter beds.

They’re now starving, shivering, staying stalwart

in the face of agonising choices and harm,

weary women again running to find safety and 

a moment of grace for their horrified children.


The human love that receives us at birth has

been warped and twisted, re-modelled until

it is a hatred, which like a volcano spills its

boiling lava over a verdant land burning,

steaming death in its severing of the living

in a holocaust of terror and no one ever





as the mother

and her