Tag Archives: Dverse

With love to Tigger our family cat on his birthday; Valentine’s Day. A tribute to the world of Cats.

This is a haibun for a very special love between human and animal. A haibun is a Japanese form of concise prose usually connected to nature as with the writer Basho and his  travel journey ‘The Narrow Road to the Deep North’ The haibun should end in the famous Japanese poetry form of three lines, a haiku. This though is quite personal and may stray or wander like a cat.  Thanks again for Dverse poets being the inspiration behind the form and Robert Frost for opening the first line of haiku.

Golden Days

Our golden cat departed from us on a Friday,appropriate perhaps as the Japanese call Friday, Gold Day. In the morning the cat and I meditated together and there seemed to be a deep glow and connection. He sat on my lap and purred a bit. As I came out of my silence he got up to return to his dying. We helped him a little. Autumn leaves were falling fast and there was rain, sun and tears. When the vet came the cat was calm and ready. We had to be too. I was strong enough to dig a garden grave. I didn’t think I could but he had given us so much strength. He had been a survivor but his hours on this planet are less than ours. Over my lifetime I have been blessed  with many cat hours, four cats, one  cat at a time. The black cat Blackie of my childhood I remember coming through the slightly open sash window of the Victorian terrace house from a small yard full of my mother’s flowers, honeysuckle and lilac tree,  to sleep and calm me in my room. The brown long haired one, Shandy, came when I longed for a cat when setting up my own home. She was from the RSPCA, abandoned, possibly pregnant. One Christmas the cat came with me from her Northern home to London but didn’t go back. My mother bluntly said “I’ll miss her more than you!” I gave in to my mother. My only kitten, the only one we named, shimmered with us in a pretty delicate way for three years until she, Shimmer went missing. Heartbreak round the local roads, searching, searching. Never knowing.

And then came Tigger, or Mr Tig. We never changed his name. Nana Violet knew some folk who couldn’t cope with a boisterous, bouncy, growing fast, ginger kitten. We knew we could and he came to stay and stay, through my daughters’ childhoods, teenage years to fully fledged human beings. He watched over them. He wasn’t always kind and his wild side loved to hunt. He loved his outdoor life, the garden, up the apple tree and round his block, over and under fences, across roads, and dodging Diwali fireworks. But most of all he loved the three of us.  And others too he would meet and greet. He managed Theo’s childhood with his loving but independent ways. She learnt how to understand cat. Through adolescence he maintained a careful eye. He would come in for the night! ‘Be more dog’ Josie once said. He purred on her phone. When the dog came he moved upstairs but soon the golden ones became friends but the cat food remained up high. We never knew his birthday but nominated February 14th 1998 knowing then that this was a special love between humankind and the animal ones. He stayed with us as long as his body could for almost 18 years. I have written this tribute to Tigger today, Valentine’s Day 2016, a Sunday, always a special day for remembering those we love and hoping we all grow stronger in that Love of all loves. Life on Earth.

Nothing gold can stay,

But in this world for a while,

We must learn  to love.

 

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Coddiwompling through Dorset England. For Dverse Poets

This poem is inspired by Dverse poets Dverse and the strange word coddiwomple. This seems to be defined as English slang but as I had never come across this I was gripped by a resfeber feeling( travel fever)  to see if I could find where the word had originated from. It’s not in the Oxford dictionary yet, unlike lolly gagging! However it has a kind of ancient ring to it. Maybe a cross between a cod piece and a wimple.  I am travelling through Dorset to visit a friend. Dorset is stunningly beautiful but has so many strange, odd and rude sounding place names. I always want to find out more.It is also a place for going on a literary tour with Thomas Hardy and others. But most important perhaps in the struggle for equality is Tolpuddle.

For me it’s not where we travel to but how we travel anywhere. Hopefully then our minds can be opened to different experiences and understandings.

If you coddiwomple in Dorset as I am doing now

You pass by place names so fun and strange.

Some will tempt you back to visit

Some will remind you of the past

Some will scare your wits away.

Fiddleford is one where maybe someone fiddled by a stream

But what they fiddled may have been a dream

If they could happily wander up the the river Piddle

And excuse themselves with just a little widdle

Dorset farming folk out in the cold.

From Roman times in Blandford Forum

No slave could ever make a quorum

The ancient chalk giant at Cerne Abbas

Still well endowed with great prowess

His private part gives hope for future births

Dorset folk of old from Celt to Roman bold.

Down to the coast to find a woman’s love

For her lieutenant looking out to sea

Lyme Regis, royal and proud

Among the fossils of prehistoric swamps

Ammonite from Jurasiic Times.

Dorset fossil hunters find a kind of gold.

To roll along on paths through Hardy’s  heavenly hills

Farming folk and friends of Tess

Characters in dark distress

Obscured within the depths of native woods.

Good folk must prevail for Dorchester jail.

The devil never far away with rocks thrown down

To make Old Harry and Aggleston

Places like Dewlish are devilish and Grim’s Ditch

Makes the Pokesdown goblins twitch.

Dorset folk beware the uncanny in the air.

But now in modern times when we’re coddiwompling along

To pass by Puddletown is easily done

We go too fast on the new highway

And can now by pass the place of martyred men

Tolpuddle and its meeting tree

Dorset folk who wanted to be free.

From coach window travelling to Dorset.