I ... entered the poem of life, whose purpose is ... simply to witness the beauties of the world, to discover the many forms that love can take. (Barabara Blackman in 'Glass After Glass')

These poems are works in progress and may be updated without notice. Nevertheless copyright applies to all writings here and all photos (which are either my own or used with permission). Thank you for your comments. I read and appreciate them all, and reply here to specific points that seem to need it — or as I have the leisure. Otherwise I reciprocate by reading and commenting on your blog posts as much as possible.

14 April 2009

When I Was a Town Planner (April Challenge 13)

Prompt: a hobby

When I was a town planner, I didn’t get paid.
That makes it a hobby, doesn’t it?
I took the job on in a voluntary way.
I could see a need, and I loved the work.

What makes a hobby anyway?
I had ruler and setsquare and blank paper,
everything I needed, and I loved the work,
creating a kind environment for people.

With ruler and setsquare, my blank paper
took on life, took on shape, took on dimension.
I created a kind environment for people,
good places to live and work and play.

The shape of life needs all those dimensions.
And it needs challenge and mystery.
Good places to live and work and play
don’t always reside on the broad highway.

In the interests of challenge and mystery
I made some streets narrow, winding, hilly,
branching off from the broad highway
into lanes behind the parks and gardens.

Those lanes that were narrow, winding and hilly
had cobbled pavements and steps that led down
to levels descending from the parks and gardens
into lairs of bandits and realms of the Fay.

Yes the cobbled pavements and steps led down
from the shops and the sunlight, the things of the day,
into dark lairs of bandits and realms of the Fay,
where the mind of a seven-year-old loved to stray.

There were shops and sunlight and things of the day
included in the planning, regardless of pay.
But my seven-year-old mind also loved to stray
wherever it was taken involuntarily.


  1. I really like the way you descend into your final rhyme pattern here with a sort of whimsical skip. It has a really nice tone.

    You're very prolific on the poetry front at the moment: I'm enjoying reading!

  2. oooh, pantoumacious. man. that's a hard form and you did it well. good match with subject and tone.

    I have done 4 or 5 failed attempts myself to get nada.

  3. Thanks Pearl. Not my first attempt either.

    But you should see what my MySpace friend Odilia does with it!