Barbara Gurney

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there was you

wanting me tostay

offering your strength

to bite my shame

spit it out into colourful memories

design a new beginning

create a building block of happiness

there was me

thinking I should go

disgraced by my choices

huddled in my past

a monochrome of solitude

unable to take not willing to give

so I left

took humiliation with me

wrapping it around lost dreams


I sink beneath the waves

Disregard thoughts of survival

Air-filled bubbles ooze from me

Each reaching for the blue of the sky

Where clouds drift

Like me

The caress of the sea

Scolds me with cold

Embraces, then threatens

Touches my thoughts of oblivion

Inevitability seeps into each pore

Gently accepting without question

This watery grave

Tosses aside consequences

It lets me be

I claim this moment

To stay beyond reality

Possess solitude

A moment of liberty

The sun shivers across the surface

Peeks through the azure

Smiles without assurances

Promises a tomorrow

I surface and gasp at life


Cruel winds fling everything from its path

Shattered houses sprinkled across the landscape

       - like condiments

Grief not yet claimed

Shock hovering  

       - waiting to land

A huddle of children cling under a sheet of tin

A flapping tent

        - a luxury

And when the typhoon stops ...

heartbreak stays

(Malaysian typhoon, November 2013)


Slavia Cafe

Under the shadow of a muse

Emptied bottles of discontent

Lie with solemn dogs

At the feet of wnwritten passions

Imperial Hotel

Evil boots tread across memories

Shivers of recall amid beauty

Glimpses of uniforms, guns, misery ...

On the underbelly of enjoyment

Kavarna Cafe

Opulence drips from chandeliers

Coffee soothes the traveller's cares

Yet beggars of old could only peek

Through misty windows and wonder

As one sips thick dark coffee from tiny cups, the history of these exquisite Czech buildings changes one's mood.

A sample of my poetry from:

Life's Shadows

Footprints of a Stranger

Do you see me?

Do you see me?

With sightless vision

Beyond the statue of identity

To the pulse of truth

Where I feel

Where I am

Dreams long held

Sent into salty tears

Feet slipping on dread

Reflecting on a smashed mirror of hope

Brittle and exposed

It’s not supposed to be

I’m there

Built around softness

Desires hoarded in a money-box of longing

Reach under my facade

Caress into the depths

Where I feel

Where I am

It's always encouraging to hear from readers: Life's Shadows:

"I absolutely loved some of your poems of which I was able to share with my beautiful grandmother at her 95th birthday in New Zealand last year.

.... heartfelt and truly inspiring writing that we thoroughly enjoyed."