December 24, 2015 Poetry , POETRY / FICTION


Mark Chambers



Crisis Reservation



The twinkle, the merriment,

Trees of star light,

But what if your blanket is the mist of the night?


The presents, the caroling,

Red brick hearth heat,

But what if your troubles will not line up neat?


The gorging, TV snoozes,

Board games, bubble wrap,

But what if addiction is your refuge and trap?


The squabbles, the bickering,

Forgiving and ease,

But what if it’s dull loneliness that doesn’t cease?


This poem, tweed nonsense:

My middle-class squeal,

So do something (if you can do) and reserve a meal!








Riverside Living



On summer days, when tourists flock,

the stone and shutter stay implacably reserved

from the whoop and wail of boating children;

made to enjoy themselves with oar, lest it be paddle.

The smear of ice cream and sun cream

and wasp-sting scream repelled by cool façade.


On autumn days, when couples stroll,

the oblique shadows cast, to past or future;

children yet to be or flown the coop in silence.

The green swirl and swishing trickle like distant café

conversation, as scarf and jumpered shoulders

swap schemes and grudges or choose where to dine.


On winter days, when eagles soar,

with effortless feather-sails on wan sun thermals,

bouncing from the shining iron ground with crunchy leaves.

The long wait of children striking out or bringing

back the newest crop for respite from competition

and keeping up. Too quiet between the visits.


On spring days, when youth’s wild,

the shutters are briskly thrown wide to blow away

musty impatience of the shortest light. They fill the growing days

with clinking glass and facile laughter along the vibrant banks.

Then languid floating with the flow, too carefree to strain,

and ceaseless confidence or anguish of those without a plan.








Of Permanence and Transience




Since Greece was ancient, Perseus, first invoked

by epic writing eyes lifted to the summer night,

sends fire to scorch white vanes in flight.

The swan flees that first hero’s range;

she fears snake-haired Medusa’s fate,

though Cygnus is all pure and soothes by view.


Despite his potent ire, which slayed the whale,

this frozen giant broodily stalks,

but hurls flashes malice-free;

like white breast of a turning swift a-wing;

Solely signals enduring presence

In indifferent harshness of night’s cold.


From the dusty comet’s tail, long named,

Each grain, sacrificed in air we breathe

to burn and flare in momentary gaze of nerds

and lovers, pulled by science or the soul.

An old romantic tries to catch the

beauty of a swan and is gifted luck.


Against immutable dark pictures,

a star carves its streak and is gone.

When eyes recover from brightness

the space it held is voided.

The mind holds retina’s loss

when love’s flight, too brief, is done.








Mark Chambers

Mark Chambers lives in the south east of England about an hour from London. He is a public servant, currently working to implement a large IT project, so poetry is a welcome diversion. Mark is a keen, if not accomplished, photographer and has recently begun combining photographs and poems, which he feels either complement each other, or that the photograph drives the poem or the poem requires the photograph to be taken. He is married with children, who are old enough to give him some time to pursue his creative passions.


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