VoicesontheBridge@GlobetrottersBar Pontypridd Wales – Sunday 12th May Tickets are like hot cakes- and flyers are flying! Don’t miss this one…

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A Sense of duty (excerpt)

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I listen to the voices of those

talking quietly of their day

of their worries,

and sharing the joy

of milestones missed

the sadness of memories

and the missing of you.

I watch men who stand

leaning, crying in a grief

that has no sense of ending

of the keening, of the longing

to hear your voice

before the sound

of it is forgotten

and that dread of forgetting.

There is a kind of peace here.

White Sheets

DSC_5843 (1)White sheets.

Hanging from the wash line.

Is this a wash day?

A wash day like it used to be in the village.

With every house on a Tuesday morning

hanging the washing on line after line

in the back gardens.

The wind catches the sheets.

And as they billow like sails

they make that cracking noise

as the cotton snaps to its full length.

White sheets blowing in the wind.

Rising and falling as they are caught and buffeted.

The wind drops and the white sheets

slowly drift back to hang limply.

The wind rises again and the sheets

begin to stretch out with the force of the breeze.

The clouds break.

And brilliant sunshine illuminates the sheets.

A stronger gust and the sheets stream out again.

Each sheet rises in sequence to reveal the pathway.

To reveal you standing there.

You. Watching me.

Silently.

And the sheets hide you again as they fall

to hang without movement.

But then begin to unfurl and rise

as yet another gust pushes the white cotton out

and you are once again exposed.

You stand watching me with that serious look.

Your eyes expressionless.

Studying me.

And once more the whiteness falls

to cover where you are standing.

There is no movement now.

Just the brilliant whiteness

falling on you like a curtain.

And then you are revealed again.

But it is not you.

It’s the girl standing there in your place.

Your daughter.

Standing there expressionless.

Staring as the sheets rise and fall rhythmically.

And then you begin to move.

A long slow stride.

Towards me.

You move.

Almost as though you are in slow motion.

That slow time again.

There is no sound now.

Your eyes are focused on me.

You know me.

You look at me.

And now rain drops.

The sound of a steady pit-pat.

The sound increasing.

Rain falling.

Suddenly a crescendo.

White sheets spattered.

Grey spots

On white sheets.

Nearly dry white sheets.

Water spatters.

Water stained

White sheets.

Turning grey.

Hanging limp now.

Hanging to the ground.

And you are gone

Awake now in the darkness.

Uncertain of the time.

Lying there listening.

To the rain.

Rain hitting against the window of the bedroom.

Words (Excerpt)

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I love the revelry of words sound

words as they ride and are formed

languishing momentarily or longer

on the back of the tongue

brought forward on the breath

to roll and reverberate in the vault

of the mouths vast darkness

to briefly rest on the tongues tip

a momentary and glorious savouring

and then to flit from the bit of my teeth

and freed then thrown outward

on the stuttering blast of breath

the sound of words the dissonant clash

and the smooth assonance

that always manages to awaken me.

Uncertain Times (excerpt)

Of words and truth.

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Like grasses bundled

And withered in storm

We are blown helplessly

And not a word is spoken.

Who sings the authentic song?

Who speaks the words of truth?

Who stands for me and mine?

Who looks at what we see?

Who hears what we hear?

Who breathes the air we breathe?

Who sees what is right and wrong?

Who speaks for me and mine?

Who sings the authentic song?

Where are our heroes and poets now?

 Rob Cullen