Putin & Paddington poem

I wonder what makes you get right hopping mad
What stirs up a bee in your bonnet
What tempts you to use certain words that are bad
Not easily put in a sonnet.

Well I’ll tell you mine, though it’s hardly great fun
Not naturally conducive to laughter
So, if that bothers you, well wait till I’m done
And huff and harangue me, well, after.

I read Mr Putin is moved to compare
Himself to one Peter the Great
Inclines me to give him a Paddington stare
And kindly suggest, “Not you, mate”.

You may think you’re hard, Mr Poots, like ol’ Clint
Who looked good in shades and short stubble
But I think by now you need more than a hint:
It’s not cool sinking countries to rubble.

Not clever your delicate ego to stroke
To big up the ‘great Russian nation’
If that means another place goes up in smoke
And faces a dire decimation.

You might want to ponder one greater than you
Who didn’t with crime share a bed
Nor cook such a foul toxic odious stew
But gave up his own life instead.

Image by Andrew Martin from Pixabay

Path of peace

How do we reckon with histories of pain
That simmer and burn, and flare up again,
Smouldering anger, how do we quell
And not let it grow or continue to dwell,
How through intractable grief find a way
To build up a justice that lasts and will stay,
How can we unearth the best, not the worst
Till someone lets go of their pain, and moves first?

Image by Gidon Pico from Pixabay

Prompted by the current middle east conflict.

Remembrance Pearl of Peace

In annual deep autumnal gloom, of russet red November,
Many of us stop a while, to pause, reflect, remember,
Huddled groups, dark overcoats with splash of poppy red,
Reassuring ritual, of words said and unsaid.

This year coronavirus lends the day a different hue,
Musings on mortality touched with other sadness too,
So if you can, go the extra mile to reach out and remember
Those who may be struggling and fragile this November.

While crimson poppies are the norm, some wear a poppy white,
A broader deep perspective to keep within our sight,
Puzzled people ask me what a white poppy is for:
To honour every person killed or traumatised by war.  

We mark the memory of the fallen, costly sacrifice
Of those who bravely gave their lives, but also mark the price,
The causes and the roots of conflict, issues broad and deep,
And actively pursue the peace, seek to preserve and keep.

In doing so, we emulate the fragile precious art
Of weaving harmony that lasts, a pearl of God’s own heart,
Like him, let all our yearning for such deep ‘shalom’ not cease,
Until, as oceans cover earth, our world is filled with peace.