The poetry window has shut again.   

Some of the coincidences that occurred during the reading period were extremely strange.   

This always happens, but I forget.    

Who would expect, for example, to find more than one poem featuring a walrus?  

Also several poems about promises. The word ‘promise’ popped up all over the place (a lovely word, when you think about it).

Dusk, too. A lot of dusk. And silk.

As far as colour went, it was the summer of blue. Many shades of blue, more than one poem being entirely about blueness. Payne’s Grey did once put a look in, but blue was overwhelmingly the colour of choice.

‘Heft’ is, as I think I have said before, definitely the new ‘shard’, and clouds find themselves shrouding the sun quite a bit. 

I am a little sensitive to shrouds at the moment, though I don’t think I’ve ever actually seen one. 

Dead bodies are sometimes wrapped in sheets, but we don’t (I don’t) refer to these as shrouds. 

The only shrouds I can find on eBay are connected with gas nozzles. However, on Amazon I have tracked down a ‘Premier Disposable Shroud with Plain Collar, White, Adult’. How extraordinary. Only ten left in stock.

There weren’t as many envelopes as usual – 97 sets of poems, when there are usually at least 120. But I figure people have picked up the fact that things are difficult here at the moment. 

However, reading the poems was a pleasure. Real poems, of which there were many, are not written lightly, and they were not read lightly. I copied out three, so I could keep them and reflect. But images and phrases from others linger, as well as some of the lovely letters that came with the poems.

It is a privilege being trusted with people’s poems. I remain convinced that writing them is a good thing, good for the spirit (if not the shroud). and some of that invariably rubs off on the reader.

The work of words is ancient and uplifting. How glad I am to be part of that fellowship. 

6 thoughts on “THE SUMMER OF BLUE”

  1. Sending you hugs from the S of France. Saw Annie yesterday – I think she’s going to send you a photo. I like her collection. H xx

  2. Hi Nell,

    Could I ask, what exactly do you mean by ‘real poems’. Surely all poems are real. Do you mean poems about real things/concerns? Aren’t all poems to a certain extent about real things or concerns, even philosophical/existential ones?



  3. Fair enough, Tristan. I don’t always think poems are real poems, though I respect their right to be called just that. I’m inclined to think a few of them are bluffing.

    For example, a poem produced by an online poem-generator is not to me a ‘real poem’ because it’s not a person seriously saying anything, though it can be enormously entertaining. A ‘found’ poem is an interesting phenomenon. A whole discussion might circulate around the extent to which, or in what context, found poems are real poems. Same for a poem compiled of random phrases, or as a result of an exercise of putting words into a certain order etc. But I’d have to go into that elsewhere. Besides, I might provoke an online spat, which wouldn’t do….

  4. Hi Nell,

    I suspect what you are talking about may be authenticity – that a poem has a believable/authentic voice/tone/narrator, but this only applies to certain type of poem.



  5. SHROUDS: on a sailing boat the shrouds are pieces of standing rigging which hold the mast up from side to side.
    cf Praise Song/Inherited Rings:” sails torn to shrouds by pack ice rounding Tierra del Fuego”
    Didn’t think I’d ever have an occasion to explain that !

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